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The American Baking Competition Review

So I want to apologize I missed my update on the semi finals for The American Baking Competition.  I was on vacation with my family 🙂  We had a fabulous time…thank you for asking.  Now onto the Finals.

This week was the Finals for The American Baking Competition!  The final three bakers left in the competition are Brian, Francine and Darlene.  All the bakers will still be asked to complete three bakes.

The first bake is the signature bake and the bakers can make anything that they want, as long as they use Georgia’s state crop, the peanut.  Darlene makes a peanut cake roll, Brian makes a peanut vanilla chiffon roll and Francine makes a spiced peanut peanut butter torte.   Brain and Darlene’s cake roll go over nicely with the judges but Francine’s crazy peanut torte is not loved by the judges.

The technical bake for the finale is a dozen Boston cream donuts, which is judge’s Paul Hollywood’s recipe. Francine redeems herself by making good donuts, though Darlene gets the best donuts.  Brian’s are a flat dud!

The showstopper bake is to make 72 miniature desserts (24 of three different kinds, meringue, pastry and cake) inspired by the American flag. Yikes.

Darlene goes with coconut mini-cakes, peach & grit tartlets and firework meringues. Brian makes raspberry white chocolate mini-cakes, mascarpone & berry tartlets and white chocolate popcorn meringues. And Francine makes coconut mini-cakes, peaches & cream choux puffs and blueberry cream meringues.

While the judges are deciding the winner of The American Baking Competition, the three bakers are led outside for a patriotic barbecue and they are joined by family, friends and the bakers who had been eliminated.

I will tell you I was very disappointed with who won the competition.  I think the competition should have been judged over the course of the whole show but it seems the judges only judged on the final show.  Oh well!  So the winner of The American Baking Competition was Brian.   He is the winner of $250,000 and a cook book deal.  I really wanted Francine or Darlene to win:(

This series was definitely a very short series and the semi finals and finals really snuck up on us.  I feel we didn’t really get to know the bakers and their families and I really think the show would be better if there was a little conflict in the show.  I mean it is a reality show!

The one thing we did get out of the show was the list of recipes.  The recipes are list here:

Happy Baking!

The American Baking Competition ReviewLast night was week 5 and with only 6 bakers left competition is getting tough.   This week the focus was on desserts.  The signature bake is eight individual custards – they can be sweet or savory.   Custard can be tricky because the eggs can curdle if you add them to the hot liquid too quickly.   A couple of the bakers had trouble with the custard; Effie’s is far undercooked, Francine’s is eggy and grainy, Elaine’s eggs curdled a bit and Brian’s is overcooked.   Darlene and James do really well on the custards.

Next is the technical bake and the bakers are asked to bake a “perfect” chocolate soufflĂ©.  This is one task I would not want to tackle.  I have never made a soufflĂ© before and I hear many things can go wrong when making a soufflĂ©.   Brian, of course, thinks the judges have the amount of ingredients wrong and changes the amounts.   You can guess what happens…his is a flop! Literally!  Does Brian really think he is that great?  He really gets on my nerves.

Effie – who started out really well during the competition – appears to be deflating. She somehow managed to forget the sugar in her soufflĂ©. She decides to just go ahead and serve the soufflĂ© under baked because she knows it’s bad.   The remaining four bakers do very well on the soufflĂ©’ and James (who never had baked a soufflĂ©’) wins the technical bake.  Yea James!

On to the show stopping bake.  Keeping with the egg theme, they need to make layered desserts using meringue as a major component. Effie is determined to not give up and vows to keep in mind why she loves baking.

Effie is redeemed with her beautiful cake with simple hazelnut flavor. Francine’s is a mess and she blames Brian because he kept their shared fridge open while he decides to decorate his cake.  I told you Brian was annoying!  Luckily for Francine the judges love the favors of her cake and they hate Brian’s cake.  James falls apart on the showstopper and presents a mess of a cake.

Star baker went to Darlene again!  I think she just might win this competition.  The judges are down to Brian and Effie to send home.  I personally would have chose Brian but unfortunately the judges send home Effie because her custard and soufflĂ©’ were both under baked.  I hate to see Effie go home.

Who do you think will be the next baker sent home?  Will it be Brian?  Who is your favorite baker to win?

Until next week, Happy Baking!

The American Baking Competition Review

It was week four in the American Baking Competition.  We are down to only seven bakers.   This was my favorite of all weeks because it was all about Bread.   Host Paul Hollywood is known for his breads.  So I was excited to see and hear his recipes.

Bread is pretty finicky due to environmental factors and the quality of ingredients.   If you have ever made bread at home you know that sometimes the yeast rises and sometimes it doesn’t.   It is very easy to kill the yeast.  I have been there done that 🙂

Remember the bakers have to complete three bakes: signature bake (something they make at home all the time), technical challenge and the final show stopper bake.

Most of the bakers do really well in the signature bake although both Kolette and (surprisingly) Effie’s breads are under baked.  Effie is one of the stronger bakers in my opinion but it just goes to show you how finicky bread can be to make.

In the technical bake, they made soft pretzels!  If you read my blog you know that my family should have been on the panel for tasting the technical bake.   We LOVE pretzels!  What shocked me was that a couple of the bakers forgot what shape a pretzel is…really?  I see and make so many that it’s engraved in my head permanently.   A lot of the bakers had trouble with the boiling process too.   Many over boiled the pretzels but Darlene did a great job and won the technical bake.

The show stopper is, of course, croissants! Laminated dough is pretty time-consuming, so they get two hours one day and three hours the next. They fold and fold and fold dough into the darkness, each of them waxing poetic about their fate thanks to how they did on the previous challenges.  Elaine (who has been star baker two weeks in a row) put her dough in the freezer instead of the fridge, which might be disaster. Kolette put in twice as much butter for her dough, and the croissants become an oozy mess.  At this point I know Kolette is going home and she did.   Darlene won Star Baker for the week because she did so well on all three challenges.

Is anyone else getting annoyed with Brian?  He definitely is my least favorite on the show.  Why you ask?

Brian complains about the mixer bowl (a gorgeous glass KichenAid bowl, by the way) and then in his home interview tells us how great he is at exercising. Then he goes a step further by trying to appeal to the judges for Star Baker.   He thinks all of bakes are the best and truthfully nothing he has made has really appealed to me.

Who’s your favorite baker?  Who do you think the final two will be?  Did you know that American Baking Competition won its time period last night with 5.8 million viewers

The American Baking Competition ReviewThe summer is here and the regular shows are off the air.   I have to be honest but I love some of the summer shows on TV and look forward to summer TV.   My favorite show is Big Brother on CBS and I am counting down the days for the premiere!  More on Big Brother coming soon 🙂

Anyway, I saw the ads for The American Baking Competition airing on CBS and since I have started baking more in the last 18 months (due to my sons allergies), I decided to watch.   So here is my review.

The show is built around the premise of gathering 10 amateur bakers and tasking them with tackling three recipes per week: A “signature” dish they make at home for friends and family; a “technical” bake in which they receive ingredients and vague instructions (would hate that)— then have to rely on their own baking know-how; and a “showstopper” — where presentation is important alongside flavor.

I didn’t feel the show displayed the food the bakers made long enough for us to look at and say, “That looks amazing and would love to taste it”.   There are 10 bakers and they each bake 3 recipes plus the show is only 60 minutes so that does not give enough time to display the food which is why I watched in the first place.

Each week someone will get kicked off the show and someone will be the Top Baker of the week.   Carlos, the Italian from Connecticut did not make the cut and was kicked off.  Francine, the southern girl, was probably one of my favorites on the show and she won Top Baker of the week.

Hopefully, as the show continues they will show more of the food that is baked and maybe we can get to know the bakers a little better too.  I would love to hear why they started cooking and baking.  Do they create their own recipes?  How often do they bake?  So many questions to be answered and hopefully the show will do that for us.

What did you think of the show and will you watch again?  Do you hope they show more food the bakers make?  Who was your favorite baker?  Until next week…Happy baking!

About Me:

Hello and welcome! I am a 40 something year old mom of two boys, living in Scottsdale, AZ with my husband Al. I started My Baby Pajamas in 2007 and have watched it grow and mature. I love to blog but am not much of a writer per say. I am a avid runner and love to compete in races. I like my yoga HOT and love to hike with my family and our pit bull mix dog, Chance. My favorite time is hanging with my family and cooking homemade dinners and hearing about everyone's day while my husband and I enjoy a glass of wine.

My Baby Pajamas

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