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Desserts week

This is the seventh week of Season 14 of The Great British Baking Show ™ and focuses on desserts.

This page is all about the food that the show brings to our screens. The goal is to have a lasting memory of some of the flavors and taste combinations, to bring some creativity and ideas to your own cooking. I hope you find it fun and useful.

Signature Dish

In episode 7 of Season 14 of The Great British Baking Show ™, the 6 remaining contestants were required to create eight identical crème caramels - beautifully set baked custards. They had 2 hours 45 minutes. 

Of crème caramels, Paul Hollywood said "It's basically a beautiful caramel sauce on the top, falling down the sides of a silky, smooth, set custard."

Prue Leith added "Baking a perfect custard is really tricky. When it's perfectly baked it will be just set. A crème caramel should wobble like a jelly. It if overbakes, it gets little holes in it and becomes a little stodgy or even hard."

For this episode of The Great British Baking Show ™, Paul Hollywood said "Obviously, the contestants can introduce any flavor into the custard of the crème caramel, or into the caramel sauce. However, the caramel has to be the star. We want it to be golden brown. If it's too pale, we're not going to get the full flavor."

Below, I share the flavors that the contestants brought to the beautiful crème caramel.

Mini Watalappan

Saku used jaggary instead of sugar in her crème caramels. She also used cardamom and nutmeg for flavors from her homeland of Sri Lanka.

Paul Hollywood judged her creme caramels as being too sweet and a little solid (see notes below about the balance of eggs yolks and egg whites).

Cristy's Orange Creme Caramels

Cristy flavored her crème caramels with orange zest and orange decoration over a nutmeg infused custard, with traditional caramel.

Paul Hollywood judged this dish harshly - he considered it badly overcooked (the caramel was showing a lot of bubbles which is a sign of overcooking).

Fig, Honey and Rosemary

Tasha, like Saku, opted to swap out the traditional caramel sauce. In Tasha's case, she used honey in place of caramel. 

Tasha's rosemary-infused custard was sandwiched between a honey caramel and a fig compote, and was served with rosemary tuiles.

Paul Hollywood judged the crème caramel as being "the most perfect texture". He found, however, that the honey sauce was too sweet and that the flavor profile 'lost direction'.

Nan's Favorite

Josh's cinnamon and orange custard was topped with cinnamon-spiced plums and tempered chocolate butterflies.

Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith judged the custard as slightly overbaked, but said that the plum and orange compote was a lovely combination.

Chai Crème Caramel

Matty's creme caramel featured a custard infused with 8 chai teabags (with 800 gm of coconut milk and 200 gm of milk). He added coconut and vanilla for a balanced flavor.

Prue Leith said "I love the flavour. It's really tasty. I could eat the whole thing."

Thai Crème Caramels

Dan's Thai-inspired dish was flavored with coriander root, galangal, lemongrass and lime.

During the cooking of the signature challenge, both judges expressed concerns. Paul Hollywood asked "how are you going to balance the sweetness with the tang and spice?" (Answer - Dan said he'd worked hard to achieve the right balance.) Prue Leith was more concerned that it wouldn't set, and she turned out to be right - the dish ended up being a little too wobbly. In favor terms, though, Paul Hollywood said "That tastes beautiful. The flavors are spot on." 

The Relaxed Recipes version of this dish is here

In Dessert Week, Dan was Star Baker.

Lessons learned in Dessert Week

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