I was lucky enough to attend the filming of The Great British Bake Off: An Extra Slice with some members of the Sunday Baking Club for Week 8, Patisserie Week. You can find my review of that week by clicking here.
The date is Friday 11th September and the theme for Week 8 has been officially released. It’s Patisserie and I scream inside! How can I ever make something to match the skills of the other Sunday Baking Club members? I sifted through my recipe books and all that kept popping up was macarons and choux pastry, neither of which I’m that good at making. It was this time that I returned to the Bake Off Patisserie Weeks of the past for inspiration. I wouldn’t have much time to bake either so my bake would have to be made across a 4 day period and eventually I settled on Holly Bell’s Neapolitan Ice Cream Petit Fours for my inspiration.
To make it slightly more special, I decided to make a large version of the cake and use the individual ones to decorate! I’ll post the recipe in due course but it won’t take 4 days to make!
By far the hardest part of making the cake was transporting a ganache-topped cake and 12 individual cakes on the London Underground! Not only was it a sunny day but being on my own carrying a rucksack and a whole bag of cake was somewhat of a logistical nightmare. I managed to steal 2 seats until we arrived at Barking at which point the train flooded with people. I was hidden behind my Tesco recycle bag but eventually I got myself onto the Jubilee line where I had this same bag trapped between my legs. It wasn’t busy but I didn’t want to block the walkway with my bag so I just stood.
Eventually I arrived in Waterloo and I headed upstairs to find the meeting place. Turns out it was at the opposite end of the station I came through so after a walk of shame, I spotted a group of 4 ladies around a table. When they came into view, I saw the bright red hair of Becky (@Becksbake), Tracy (@TheLittlePK), Dale (@frenchcritter) and Sarah (@layingthetable) and I knew I was in the right place seeing as they all had recycle bags and Becky had her bake in a tall white box. Soon all the others arrived and we set off to ITV Studios led by John (@jiholland11) and his trusty handkerchief!
We signed in, got given a lilac wristband, took our bakes to the dressing room where we assembled them onto our serving plates and told Oliver, the researcher, all about our bakes so the show could choose some to talk about and taste! It was at this point the phones came out to take pictures of all our bakes and pens to sign confidentiality agreements! Here are some below:
Particular highlights are the macaron tower (@foxtonm), the pornstar patisserie (@ClareEPLS) and the croquembouche (@Becksbake)!
We went out for lunch before returning to watch the episode and it was sad that Paul had to leave. I have to say watching the episode with 200 people was quite different to how I watch it normally which is in front of my phone! After a short break, filming for Extra Slice began!
Sarah Millican, Cherish Finden, Gregg Wallace and Joe Lycett were the panel and managed to give a big smile to Joe as he walked in! It was surprising just how much does not make it into the show; we must have recorded 2 hours worth of footage in total and only 27 minutes of that gets put into the final show! But even so the bit that the Sunday Baking Club all looked forward to was the tasting of the studio bakes of which Rebecca (@becsj76), Siobhan (@littleduckquack) and John (@jiholland11) all got mentions with John’s Chocolate Marmite Macarons being one of the most well-received, with Joe referring to him as a time-traveller and Sarah giving him a Dalek-religieuse as a prize!
As filming ended, Paul the baker made his way around us bakers as we packed our bakes away and I managed to slip him one of my Neapolitan Cakes and the feedback from him was that there were delicious so at least I got someone to try my cake!
The day out was absolutely brilliant and I would love to go again, it was a great experience and my first time behind the scenes in a TV studio. The biggest surprise was how strict everything was, especially about mobile phones! And another Sunday Baking Club meetup in the future I think is on the cards! Although I’m not in this photo, look at this motley crew!
And probably the most important bit, I did get on TV! I’m on the far left in the trailer!