Sunday, 20 October 2013

The Great British Bake Off: Apricot Couronne

In the words of Emma, Alice vs The Great British Bake Off is back!! (In a very picture heavy post)

I realise that I'm wildly behind with these technical bakes I'm insisting on making, but this way, I still get Bake Off enjoyment after it finishes on Tuesday (sob sob). As an aside, I think Kimberley will win, but I want Ruby to- it makes me sad that she's received so much bad press for a) being beautiful (it made me SO angry when a paper said last week that she's only got this far because Paul Hollywood likes her because she's pretty- it completely negates the fact that actually, her bakes are always good- she's won Star Baker three times for goodness sake!) and b) for putting herself down and crying a lot. Come on- it's a very British thing to be self deprecating, isn't it!? I can guarantee that if I were on The Great British Bake Off I would cry nearly every week, and would take my efforts to Paul and Mary going "Oh it's really not very good, I'm so sorry...". So consider that fair warning for if I ever apply for the show.

I have now made an apricot couronne, which is a delicious sort of sweet dough (not a sweetbread, very different!) filled with apricots, walnuts, and raisins. As I mentioned when I made English muffins, I'm not a bread maker- and that extended to sweet dough. But after this, I think I might be trying it more often.

I used Paul Hollywood's recipe, as always, and again, found it quite straightforward because I didn't have half the instructions missing, or a team of cameramen staring at me. And I'm actually getting used to this whole "waiting for bread to prove" thing- it really isn't that annoying, and if I'd been sensible, I'd have gone for a run while it was completing its first prove (as it was, I made the filling and watched an episode of Friends).

The things I found most difficult about this bake were being patient (as always), the initial twisting of the two ropes of dough (I was worried about it not being tight enough, and the ends stretching), and getting the twisted crown onto my baking sheet. Seriously, my one tip would be to twist the dough into a long rope, put your baking tray under the middle of the rope, then turn it onto a crown on the baking tray, rather than on the counter top. Just trust me, OK?!

I would actually say that this is one of the best bits of bread/ sweet dough making I've ever made. It's delicious, soft, well baked (even if I do say so myself). If I were being critical, I don't think I rolled it tightly enough when I made it into a swiss roll, I didn't put enough icing on, and I obviously missed out the flaked almonds, but hey- it isn't as dreadful as it could have been.

If you're interested, here are my attempts at Angel Food Cake and English Muffins too!


  1. I want Kimberly to win! She's so sure of all the bakes; the rest of them all going losing it and there's Kimberly going, "Well, the trick with this is to do this." I do like Ruby though.

  2. I find Kimberly so smug!
    This recipe looks delicious Alice x

  3. I think this looks incredible :) it would definitely stand up in the technical challenge on Bake Off!
    I love that you're following the show and actually making the recipes, I just sit and judge from my sofa haha
    I might actually attempt this recipe though :)
    emmerliejay x

  4. Oh my goodness. I can't believe how good this looks, Alice!!!!!! Need this in my afternoon!!

  5. Oooh looks so yummy! I really need to catch up on Bake Off, have only seen two episodes!

  6. This shouldn't make me as happy as it does. Why are these posts my favourite on the internet? I think you should apply for next year. I will make TEAM ALICE t-shirts and maybe badges.

    Thank you for doing these again, even if they are just for me.

    Emma x

  7. Gawd you're so clever! I'm so impressed!

    I want to eat this right now

    I love Ruby, at first I couldn't handle her depressing tones, but now I've come to enjoy them x

  8. Can't believe it's the final tonight, always feeling like something's missing the following Tuesdays after it's finished! I want Ruby to win too, but I agree, I have this feeling that Kimberly will win. This looks absolutely delicious Alice, I would love to try it myself some time! Xx


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