I sobbed, okay?
But so did Mary Berry! And if it’s good enough for Mary Berry, it’s good enough for me…
I know that some people would not understand why we get so emotionally involved in a baking show; but, that’s the point, it’s not just a baking show.
My husband and I have been avidly watching Bake Off since series 3, and have watched the previous 2 series on catch-up, with serious regret that we didn’t discover this show from the beginning. After all, it’s just fab isn’t it? Who wouldn’t fall in love with a show that features bakes that make us salivate, wishing we could produce something so incredible; where the wit and repartee of Mel and Sue leave our faces aching from laughter; and where ordinary people are embraced by the British public for their ability (or lack of!) to avoid a soggy bottom.
What started out as a cute, humble show on BBC Two, has now risen so much in popularity that the final made the BBC 6 O’clock News! And 14.5 million people tuned in to watch it on Wednesday night, making it the most-watched show of the year so far. An amazing achievement.
But to be honest, I don’t think for one minute that we should patronise the show by patting it on the head and giving it a gold star. Its success was inevitable from the start. Because it’s cuddly. Because it’s funny. And most of all because it’s heartwarming.
And this year’s series was no exception. In fact, the contestants raised the bar on home baking this year. With syrups made from fizzy drinks, wells made out of chocolate and lions made out of bread, they astounded us with their baking, decorating and construction skills.
But there was one contestant who stood out from the rest, from early on in the series. She singled herself out at first with her quirky personality – a totally loveable character. Then, she gained confidence in her baking skills and knocked us for six with some of the creations she made, and the consistently brilliant bakes she produced. Her chocolate peacock was truly beautiful.
Oh, Nadiya. We never doubted you, and we cheered in triumph when Sue called your name out on Wednesday night. And then, of course, we cried with you at this amazing thing you had achieved.
And now it is over for another year. What to do on a Wednesday night? What to use as inspiration for weekend bakes? How to cope without the weekly wit of Mel and Sue?
Of course, the masterclasses are on record already, a little top up in a few weeks time. Mary and Paul always give us a little bit more at Christmas and Easter. And then, the countdown will begin for Series 7. Only 300 days to go…