Sunday, 17 August 2014

Great British Bake Along: Paprika Thins

It's the weekend so we know what that means!  It is time for:

We're now two weeks into the Great British Bake Off and round 2 was biscuits.  It came up much sooner than the past couple of years but I was rather thankful it fell on this week as biscuits take less time than most things and I had a second bake planned since it is the Hubby's birthday this weekend (post to come later this week).  But before we get into the bake, let's talk bakers!

Once again, we had three interesting challenges.  The signature bake was to produce 36 savoury biscuits.  Admittedly I don't feel I can comment much on this one as I am not an eater of such things.  I am not a crackers and cheese girl, despite my love of cheese.  So I couldn't say if what they were doing was anything special.  Admittedly, I thought Martha was mad to make sandwich biscuits because then she was making 72 not 36 but good for her for pulling it off.  I didn't think Diana's really counted as biscuits given they were made with pastry, though again she was also mad because she made her own puff pastry and they only had two hours?!  I remember thinking Norman's were a bit boring and simple as well.  In fact, most of the things Norman did this episode were too simple.  It was a bit disappointing.

The technical challenge was florentines.  Now, I've made florentines before but don't make them very often because they always cause me bother.  Every time I have made them they have adhered to the paper they were cooked on and I've had to painstakingly remove it after baking.  It is so frustrating so I was watching intently to see if any of the bakers had the same problem.  Apparently not!  I want to know what paper they were using!

Then there was the showstopper.  Oh, I would be quite frustrated with this one because it is so fiddly!  A scene constructed entirely of biscuits is not an easy task, but this is the showstopper so it wouldn't be.  I wouldn't even know where to begin.  Some of the designs though!  Luis's was ridiculously good.  Especially since he chose fiery flavours for the dragon.  That was clever.  Richard's was also amazing.  That interlocking sea monster was just a work of genius.  It's not really a surprise he won this week.  These two are definitely ones to watch.  I'm also keeping an eye on Chetna and Jordan because I really like them!  And I think Martha is due a win (even though I'm still horribly envious).  She doesn't seem to have done anything wrong so far and yet has been beaten out of Star Baker each week.

As for who left this week, I admit I did not think it would be Enwezor.  I really thought it would be Norman, though the Hubby pointed out that Norman had received compliments in the first round.  Enwezor had not had much in the way of praise.  It was sad.  I liked his rocket!  And props to him for baking with children attached to his legs when he is at home.  I don't think I would have the patience for that!

Next week is bread.  I'm thinking Norman may do rather well on this one.  He strikes me as a bread man.  Guess we shall find out on Wednesday!

Right, so onto this week's bake.  Like last week I decided I would take on the signature challenge.  I rarely make anything savoury so this would make a nice change.  Luckily, my lovely yellow biscuit book has a section on savoury biscuits so I ran options by the Hubby and his mum and sister, since they would be the ones eating them, and these paprika biscuits won.

A biscuit dough often is, this wasn't too tricky to put together.  I had it made in 15 minutes.  In fact, the whole process was actually pretty quick.  Even though I could only fit 12 biscuits in my oven at one time, I was still finished all 36 well before the 2 hour limit was up.  I even ended up redoing the first 12 after I'd initially cut them out because I realised I had split the dough wrong (and I'm supposed to be good at maths!).  So this is a fairly quick bake.  And very simple.  I always appreciate something quick and simple, especially when I am pressed for time because there are other things to be making.

They turned out rather well though I don't think I would be complimented on my presentation.  Whilst the bake seemed to be fairly even, they do vary in thickness ever so slightly.  The thickest ones could have done with a couple more minutes baking, but it was hard to tell since they are still soft when they come out the oven and firm up as they cool.  Some also went a little wonky when baking.  Other than that though they were okay.  The paprika was not as strong as I thought it would be but I discovered my paprika was out of date...and as we learnt on GBBO this week, that weakens the flavour.  Should have opened my new packet.  They were still enjoyable though and go very well with cheese.  I'll be making them again with in date paprika and they should be even better!  

Recipe - adapted from Home Baking Biscuits and Cookies
Makes 36
  • 345g/12oz plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 170g/6oz oatmeal
  • 3 tsp paprika
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 170g/6oz butter
  • 6 tbsp soured cream or yoghurt
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 and line 3 baking sheets with greaseproof paper.
  2. Put the flour, oatmeal, paprika, baking powder and salt into a bowl and mix together.
  3. Rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  4. Gradually add the soured cream (or yoghurt) and bring the mixture together to form a smooth but firm dough.
  5. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to about 0.5cm/0.25inches thick.
  6. Use a round 7.5cm/3inch diameter cutter to cut out the biscuits and place onto the prepared trays. 
  7. Prick each biscuit with a fork.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes until a light golden brown.
  9. Allow to rest on the trays for a couple of minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling. 

No comments:

Post a Comment