Great British Bake Off 2018: Pastry Week recap

Great British Bake Off 2019: Pastry Week recap

by Chetna Makan 16 October 2019

With five bakers remaining, the Bake Off tent throws a trio of tough challenges at them during Pastry Week. Chetna Makan reports on what happened.

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Chetna is a food writer and baker who appeared on the 2014 series of Great British Bake Off.

Chetna is a food writer and baker who appeared on the 2014 series of Great British Bake Off.

Pastry Week brings us to the quarter finals of Great British Bake Off and we start the show with some bakers saying they don't really like pastry. Every week we have had some bakers not liking the bakes they were going to make, which makes me question if they actually knew they were signing up for a baking show?

The showstopper challenge requires them to bake a tarte Tatin, which I absolutely love for its sweetness and caramelisation. I’m not so sure about a savoury take on it.

Rosie makes a black garlic, onion and goat’s cheese tart, which turns out to be far too garlicky according to Prue and has a soggy bottom according to Paul. Personally, I can’t imagine that there’s such a thing as too much garlic, ever!

Henry makes a crab, tomato and new potato tart, which looks very neat, tastes delicious and makes Prue very happy with the flavours. It appears to be a very hot day in the tent but Henry is still wearing his trademark tie – even though he seems to be turning red at times.

Steph makes a caramelised shallot and goat’s cheese tart which is too thin in the pastry but tastes delicious regardless. Alice goes for a leek, apple and goat’s cheese tart that needs more colour and turns out to be too wet.


David makes a caramel carrot tart, which is too dry and doesn’t look very appetising. He also tells us that in Bulgaria you go into the hills to pick walnuts; the ones he was using were picked by his partner’s grandmother. In England we just go to Sainsbury’s and pick our walnuts, much easier and quicker I say!

Moving on to the technical challenge, the bakers are tasked with making a Moroccan pie made using brick pastry. The bakers have to make twelve thin sheets of ‘walker’ pastry wrapped around a perfectly spiced filling to form a pie. Just like the bakers, I had never heard of such a pastry and I’m not sure if I would be going through the trouble of making it anytime soon.

The bakers struggle with the pastry and Steph has a meltdown when her pastry doesn’t stick to the pan. I do feel for her as it can get so very stressful in there, especially in the technical when you have no clue what you are making.

Henry ends up in last place and David (finally) comes first. He has been so close so many times and this week it was his turn to top the technical. I wanted to give him a big hug!


This week’s showstopper calls for a stunning vertical pie: a large pie base with decoratively shaped pastry vertically supporting two other pies. It sounded very similar to what we had to make few years ago.

Alice makes an apple treehouse with shortcrust pastry, a lovely tree trunk and a cute little swing. I absolutely loved her design, but the second she started to roll and shape the pastry you could tell it was very dry and thick, even before baking. So it was no surprise that the judges found it too tough and dry, even though they loved the way it looked.

David makes a Whitby fish pie in shortcrust pastry and his design (as always) is lovely and intricate. Sadly, it is too dry and salty. Rosie, on the other hand, has another stunning design and I think it was the most intricate of all the bakers. The details on the dragon and making so many pies wasn’t easy, but then it turned out to be yet another pie with dry filling and pastry that was too thick.

Steph’s carousel design is beautiful and her spicy curry fillings are loved by Paul and Prue. I loved doing this challenge in the tent and made something very similar myself – I think curry and pastry are a match made in heaven.

Finally, Henry makes a chandelier picnic pie that contains both sweet and savoury fillings. His design is the simplest of the lot, with no details on the pies whatsoever. And then the pastry turns out too thick and the filling too dry!

It was a close call really, I am not sure if I wanted, Henry, Rosie or Alice to go. Steph was clearly a candidate for Star Baker and gets one after all the praise for her pies. But I was very sad to see Henry leave the tent as he was entertaining with his replies, fun to watch and a good baker.

So we are left with the fab four looking forward to the semi-finals next week. I hope it will be a little more exciting than Pastry Week!