Bake Off Bake Along 2016 – Pastry Week

Pastry week was the first week when I didn’t get to watch Bake Off on Wednesday night. I was busy every single night last week after work, and straight into the weekend. I can’t complain, though busy, it’s been really good fun, but it did mean I caught up with pastry in snippets. In fact, I didn’t even get to the end until early on Sunday morning whilst Alicia and I finished off our breakie under blankets in the loft we were staying in, in the Cotswolds, Hatty and Charlotte having already left.

I liked that pastry week was quite different this year, with breakfast pastries, bakewell tart and amuse bouche. Only having about 2 hours spare on Sunday, I figured I didn’t have too long to fuss over pastry week. I’ve made a lot of bakewell tarts in the past because, oh em gee, I love them. But after last years frangipane, it wouldn’t challenge me enough, so….NEXT!

Breakfast pastries sounded great, but I’d realistically only want to make 2 or so, else they’d be a waste, as I’m not sure how long they actually last. I loved some of the contestants flavours though, and the concept was fun. Then again, amuse bouche seem so dainty and pretty, yet also quite wasteful and odd to have just for Adam and I. However, what intrigued me about the filo pastry deliciousness was Andrews great idea of baklava bites.




Talking of contestants, can I say just how sad it will be without Val?! No she wasn’t the best baker, but she was funny and cute and obviously so much fun – love the idea of her making up games for them all!

I’ve never made baklava, and it’s one of the few sweet treats Adam really enjoys, so rather than sticking completely to the bake off bake along, I went off piste and just made a batch of normal size baklava. You know, in three different flavours, of course!

I also bought my filo pastry.

I mean, unless you’re actually competing on real life Great British Bake Off, who in the flipping world has time to make actual filo?! Shortcrust, yes, of course. But filo or puff?! With that much rolling out, chilling and layers…sorry Mazza, ain’t nobody got time for that…!!




I also didn’t actually have much concept of how baklava pastries were made. I did some intense googling, grasped the basic concept, then just ran with my own versions.

I present to you….

Pistachio and Orange Baklava

Chocolate and Hazelnut Baklava

Almond and Walnut Baklava 


Adam was chuffed as I made enough to allow him a box to take to work, a box for my dad to enjoy this week and a box for my mum to share with her TAs as they battle having a week at their annual primary school camp with thirty or so 9 year olds. I’ve since had texts exclaiming delight at their deliciousness, so that’s a good thing I guess!



My impressions included:

  • So. Many. Layers. I lost count a few times and had to count out remaining pastry sheets to work it out…
  • My nuts all looked like Neapolitan ice cream, if you discount the variation in colour and the fact it’s actually nutty sugary sprinkle.
  • The way they cook is so satisfying, so pretty, so flakey.
  • So. Much. Butter! Seriously, over a pack of butter went into these I reckon. The Bake Off Bake Along has certainly not been good for your heart health this year!
  • How to supermarkets stop their pastry layers from sliding off all over the shop, I had a fair few escapees!
  • A combination of pastry, nuts, butter and honey is a winner, what is there not to love?




We’re now getting to the serious stage where each week I don’t want anyone to leave the tent, and the competition really steps up a notch. Botanicals certainly sounds like an interesting one next week…!!