20 In Food & Recipes

Bake Off Bake Along | Bread + Birthday Cake

bake off bake along bread

Happy Monday everyone!

I can’t believe it’s another bake off post. I want to reveal something to you – I actually watched the first 3 episodes last week when I was looking at recipes to make bread. I don’t want to insult anyone here, but my first impression was that I found it ridiculous! And yet, I couldn’t stop watching. The one thing I love about this show is the contestants! They are so funny and cute and inventive!

I was shocked by Marie leaving (even though all of you had mentioned it last week), I literally almost cried for Dorret when her mousse didn’t set and her cake was a mess, same thing when Alvin didn’t finish his cookie box. So many feelings! So turns out I’m just not a fan of the judges or the presenters…but I can get over that and watch the contestants forever! My favourites right now are Tamal, Flora and Ian, though I’m also a big fan of Paul, Alvin, Mat, Nadiya, Ugne…well basically everyone…

But enough of that and on to this week’s bake!

I had a hard time understanding the different breads – I mean I’d never heard of quick bread or soda bread before. I love baguettes (in true French manner, I eat them almost every day) but I thought it was going to be a bit difficult. And never mind that bread sculpture….

So I found the sweet soda bread recipe from Paul and slightly personalised it. The Brit is a big fan of poppy seed so I decided to try out a poppy seed and lemon zest soda bread. 

Poppy seed & lemon sweet soda bread
Yields 1
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
55 min
  1. 400g plain flour
  2. 1 tsp table salt
  3. 2 tsp baking powder
  4. 50g caster sugar
  5. 50g poppy seeds
  6. 50g unsalted butter diced
  7. 2 lemons, zest only
  8. 1 large free-range egg
  9. 175ml buttermilk
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a baking tray with baking parchment.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking powder, caster sugar and poppy seeds. Using your fingers, rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Mix in the lemon zest.
  3. Mix the egg and buttermilk together then stir into the dry mixture using a wooden spoon. Use your hands to bring the dough together, then place onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a ball.
  4. Place the dough on the baking tray and make a cut or two at the top using a knife. Bake for 30–35 minutes, or until risen and golden-brown. Cool completely on a wire rack before serving.
Adapted from Paul
Adapted from Paul
Adventitious Violet https://adventitiousviolet.com/
It made me nervous because I had only made Chilean bread once with my father, but I was so surprised by how quickly and easy it came together! Add this and that, make a dough ball and boom in the oven!

I think I didn’t get the oven and timing absolutely right because some bits of the bread were still a bit under done, but it was otherwise delicious! The Brit put his seal of approval on it!

bread week

And bonus, since it’s the Brit’s birthday today (Happy birthday my love!) I also spent the weekend cooking and baking for our little intimate celebration with us and his best friend on Saturday. I made his favourite, and my first, Victoria Sponge Cake. 


I ruined it a little bit by taking it out of the oven too quickly – so this week’s lesson is definitely to always leave things in the oven a good 5 minutes longer than I would think!

What’s your big baking lesson learnt from this week’s challenge?xx


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