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Where Are Your Favorite ‘Great British Bake Off’ Contestants Now?

This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.

For ten weeks, they charm us with their sky-high sweets, poise under p…

This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.

For ten weeks, they charm us with their sky-high sweets, poise under pressure, and tenacious treats, but after the tent flaps shut, we pretty much only hear from former Great British Bake Off contestants when they show up on holiday specials. What happens when the people we cheered on, the ones who broke our hearts with soggy bottoms, and those who warmed our hearts with Hollywood handshakes return to daily life?

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How Maru Toledo Is Preserving Jalisco’s Forgotten Culinary History

When Maru Toledo asked a 100-year-old woman about a “turco de garbanz[o],” an old wedding dessert made with shreds of chicken, the elder shook her cane at the chef, less than half her age, demanding answers. “Where did you get that recipe from; how do …

When Maru Toledo asked a 100-year-old woman about a “turco de garbanz[o],” an old wedding dessert made with shreds of chicken, the elder shook her cane at the chef, less than half her age, demanding answers. “Where did you get that recipe from; how do you know it?”

Toledo, a culinary historian, explained her work: She researches the disappearing recipes of Jalisco, her home state, and had combed through old documents to piece together this specific one.

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How to Make an English Summer Pudding Bomb, GBBO Style

It all comes down to this week’s final bakes for the contestants under the tent competing to win this season of the Great British Baking Show. The elaborate showstopper challenge, which calls for the final contestants to create an edible structure of o…

It all comes down to this week’s final bakes for the contestants under the tent competing to win this season of the Great British Baking Show. The elaborate showstopper challenge, which calls for the final contestants to create an edible structure of our beautiful planet,” shows off Abdul, Sandro, and Syabira’s creativity. But it’s the technical elements that highlights their skills, and this week, it comes in the form of a summer pudding bomb.

To the American ear, this dessert sounds confusing, but both summer pudding and bombs are specific types of desserts (the latter often referred to with the French term “bombe”). The desserts are related—each a version of molded parfaits, and the use of both terms indicates precisely what the bakers should make—without any precise instructions.

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What Is a Charlotte Dessert, As Seen on GBBO?

This week the signature challenge hit all the sweet spots (pun intended) of great culinary television: a simple, widely known dish that loans itself to plenty of interpretation and personalization. Done right, a Charlotte almost always looks fantastic,…

This week the signature challenge hit all the sweet spots (pun intended) of great culinary television: a simple, widely known dish that loans itself to plenty of interpretation and personalization. Done right, a Charlotte almost always looks fantastic, too—one of its hallmarks is the imprint of its decretive mold.

At its core, the Charlotte is a dessert made in a mold by the same name, using a sponge base, often with softened ladyfingers, as in a tiramisu. From there, the dessert splinters into several different versions: baked ones filled with fruit, like the well-known apple charlotte, and unbaked ones, most commonly known as the cream-filled Charlotte Russe.

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What Even Is a Vol-Au-Vent, As Seen on the ‘Great British Baking Show?

Somehow, even pastry week managed to sneak in a technical challenge that didn’t involve baking, continuing the theme of this season of Great British Baking Show. But while this theme often brings delicate and stylized pastries that tend to put some con…

Somehow, even pastry week managed to sneak in a technical challenge that didn’t involve baking, continuing the theme of this season of Great British Baking Show. But while this theme often brings delicate and stylized pastries that tend to put some contestants at a disadvantage, this week’s signature challenge gave everyone a decent chance to show off their puff pastry chops by making sweet vol-au-vents. The simple pastry, which is as much an edible serving dish as it is a specific recipe, offers an open-ended, kick-up-the-creativity opportunity for the final five remaining tent-dwellers.

These days, the vol-au-vent and its mini-sized sibling, the bouchée à la reine, most often show up as small, savory appetizers filled with any sort of cream-sauced meat or vegetable. The name of the dish means “flying in the wind” which doesn’t refer to the bakers’ chances blowing about in the tent, but rather to the lightness of the pastry, which is usually shaped like a pot with a lid: round, hollowed out, ready to be filled. Unfortunately, it is often less “flying in the wind” and more “leadenly glued to an hors d’oeuvres tray,” but that’s beside the point.

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How to Make Apple Cake, As Seen on ‘The Great British Bake Off’

Halloween isn’t for two more weeks, but The Great British Bake Off gives time only as much respect as it gives culture, and thus chose to run the skeleton-filled episode a few weeks early. It doesn’t really matter since nothing could ever be anywhere n…

Halloween isn’t for two more weeks, but The Great British Bake Off gives time only as much respect as it gives culture, and thus chose to run the skeleton-filled episode a few weeks early. It doesn’t really matter since nothing could ever be anywhere near as scary as the tacos created by the bakers during Mexican Week. Except, perhaps, the tattoo that James—the baker eliminated on that episode—has since gotten on his upper back, which depicts a cactus with a bushy mustache and a sombrero just above the word “Mexican’t.”

The episode included an unintentionally frightful challenge for the technical: the show unleashed its British sensibilities on the all-American campfire treat, but the s’mores involved no campfire, and no Graham crackers. Thankfully, this week’s signature challenge returned to the kinds of classic bakes that people watch the show for: simple cakes that each baker can put their own unique spin on. In keeping with the season, the assignment was to make apple cakes, and the results ranged from Ukrainian sharlotka to a spiced version with sour plums.

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This Great-Grandmother Dominates Her District Fair Recipe Competition Every. Single. Year.

Absolutely crushing the competition at the local fair is nothing new for Linda Skeens. This year, the Virginian great-grandmother went viral after winning more than 25 of the 80 contests at the Virginia-Kentucky District Fair—and sweeping the medals in…

Absolutely crushing the competition at the local fair is nothing new for Linda Skeens. This year, the Virginian great-grandmother went viral after winning more than 25 of the 80 contests at the Virginia-Kentucky District Fair—and sweeping the medals in the Cake, Pie, Cookie, Sweet Bread, Savory Bread, Brownie, and Candy categories. She won for cooking, canning, and baking, and she even placed in the embroidery and wall-decor categories, per Today. But apparently she’s dominated the competition before, as TikTok and radio personality Mason Moussette learned after she tracked down the mystery champion for an interview.

“I usually win,” Skeens said. She’s a regular at the fair and often triumphs in pretty similar ways to this year. What made this year different, according to the humble winner who has no social media of her own (or even a cell phone or email address, her granddaughter told the Washington Post), was that the fair posted about it on Facebook.

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For Some Farmers’ Market Vendors, Inflation May Be The End

Dinner just got a lot more expensive: the Consumer Price Index (CPI) showed that supermarket and grocery store prices went up by almost 11 percent between April 2021 and this year, with predictions slating it to rise further (it rose by 1.3 percent between March and April alone). Surprisingly, food for home consumption grew even faster than restaurant prices. While the CPI doesn’t have a specific measure of the prices at farmers’ markets around the country, many vendors feel the squeeze of gas prices and ingredients acutely.

“It is starting to look like running a tiny business is not really worth it financially,” says Alina Muratova, founder of Sweet Bakery in Seattle, Washington, who sells at the Ballard Farmers Market. In the last two years, her costs skyrocketed—including the price of butter, which doubled. It costs her $15 just to drive her mini-van 7 to 8 miles from her commissary kitchen to the market a number that grows exponentially for farmers coming from further away or who need larger vehicles for their wares.

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Dinner just got a lot more expensive: the Consumer Price Index (CPI) showed that supermarket and grocery store prices went up by almost 11 percent between April 2021 and this year, with predictions slating it to rise further (it rose by 1.3 percent between March and April alone). Surprisingly, food for home consumption grew even faster than restaurant prices. While the CPI doesn’t have a specific measure of the prices at farmers’ markets around the country, many vendors feel the squeeze of gas prices and ingredients acutely.

“It is starting to look like running a tiny business is not really worth it financially,” says Alina Muratova, founder of Sweet Bakery in Seattle, Washington, who sells at the Ballard Farmers Market. In the last two years, her costs skyrocketed—including the price of butter, which doubled. It costs her $15 just to drive her mini-van 7 to 8 miles from her commissary kitchen to the market a number that grows exponentially for farmers coming from further away or who need larger vehicles for their wares.

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This New Strawberry Is Yellow & Tastes Like Pineapples

Last year, as early summer fruits rolled out in grocery stores, aesthetic-minded shoppers got excited about the new rosé strawberries, a beautiful pink ombre version of the classic bright red fruit. This year, the same berry producer is bringing those …

Last year, as early summer fruits rolled out in grocery stores, aesthetic-minded shoppers got excited about the new rosé strawberries, a beautiful pink ombre version of the classic bright red fruit. This year, the same berry producer is bringing those back, along with a new variety, called the Tropical Bliss strawberry.

The Tropical Bliss berry is light yellow, with a tropical punch flavor, according to Driscoll’s, the company that developed and produces them. Eaters will taste pineapple and passionfruit notes, they claim, and that the berries are “intensely sweet at first, balanced by a refreshing finish.” But if last year’s rosé berry trend is any indication, what people love most about these berries is how good they look on camera – though the yellow Tropical Bliss are less instantly eye catching, they do offer another option for making rainbow-hued fruit boards (for the camera or to impress your friends).

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Pickle Pasta Salad Will Be This Summer’s Potluck Hit

On the cusp of potluck season, with another year of mostly outdoor gatherings on the horizon, a recent viral TikTok video seems like a strong candidate for this summer’s trendiest dish: pickle pasta salad. The only thing cooler than this easy pantry re…

On the cusp of potluck season, with another year of mostly outdoor gatherings on the horizon, a recent viral TikTok video seems like a strong candidate for this summer’s trendiest dish: pickle pasta salad. The only thing cooler than this easy pantry recipe might just be that in the five days since the video on how to make it posted, it earned about two and a half million views, and even got a comment from Lizzo, whose music plays over the directions.

It's not necessarily a groundbreaking dish—after all, midwestern moms have been stirring pickles into creamy pasta and serving it for picnics and football games for ages. But the timing just hit the crowd hard: Everybody is clearly ready to start thinking about dishes that signify the sunshine season is here, and the simplicity of the recipe helps make it that much more enticing.

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