If you’re a regular Sneaky Veg visitor you’ll know that I am a huge fan of the Great British Bake Off and have been baking along with this year’s show by taking part in the Great Bloggers Bake Off and adding my healthier twists to the bakes on the show such as these beetroot, walnut and goats cheese palmiers and this refined sugar-free sweet potato swiss roll.
So when I was invited along to the launch of Bake With A Legend – brand new London-based cookery classes where the teachers are ex-Bake Off contestants – I was just a little bit excited!
The reason I look so pleased is because Glenn took over hand whisking my cream for me! I’m not sure what he was looking so pleased about – perhaps I’d cracked a particularly good joke?
It’s possible to book a place at one of the classes just for yourself, or for you and a friend. However, you can also book a custom event for a large group – they’d be perfect for a team building day or hen party. Everything is provided – refreshments, all the ingredients and cooking equipment and tuition. Plus you get to take home what you’ve made. All you need to bring along is a sense of humour and willingness to get stuck in!
At the event I went along to both Howard Middleton and Glenn Cosby from the 2013 series of the Great British Bake Off were there and we made Glenn’s praline eclairs. Now I consider myself to be quite a good baker and ask me to make you a loaf of bread, some cookies or a cake and I can do it without any problem. But there’s something about patisserie that just gives me the fear and so I’ve tended to avoid it.
Glenn attempted to lay these fears at rest during his intro when he explained that choux pastry is much easier to make than you’d think. He then proceeded to list all the things that could go wrong, thereby making me nervous once again!
I dread to think what Paul and Mary would have said at the sight of my eclairs before they went in the oven but they tasted great nonetheless!
In the end it turned out that the pastry was easier to put together than I’d expected and we had a lot of fun making the eclairs. Both Glenn and Howard were hilarious and there was a lot of laughter (and much Bake Off-style innuendo) over the course of the evening. They both did a great job of working the room and offering help and advice to us all.
And of course there was a judges’ taste test at the end, just as there always is in Bake Off. Sad to say that my eclairs didn’t win but that could be because I ran out of time and didn’t manage to top them with praline.
There are classes coming up in December where you can bake praline eclairs with Glenn, chocolate buns with Howard and pinwheel bread and mince pies with 2015 runner-up Ian Cumming. Find out more about Bake With A Legend.
Me with Glenn Cosby and Howard Middleton at the Bake With A Legend launch. By this point it was quite late and I was regretting my choice of prosecco, popcorn and chocolate eclairs for dinner!