It remains a strange thing to have done: to have taken The Great British Bake Off, a show that lives and dies by its showcasing of amateur skills and the invitation to lose yourself in a nostalgic daydream of fluffy buttercream, and stripped it of every ounce of that to produce a spinoff. But there you go and here we are – the fourth series of Bake Off: The Professionals (Channel 4).
The first challenge is to bake 24 identical miniature linzer tortes. It does not go well. I imagine these to be little chocolate German tanks, possibly with working turrets – they call themselves professionals, after all – but, of course, they are not (for one thing, they are Austrian, named after the city of Linz). However, considering the trouble most teams have, I wonder if it would be any trickier to give my idea a go. A lot of latticework, is all I am saying. Only Nelson and Evaldas, from the South Place hotel in London, really kick its arse. They make a lattice you could train roses up, freeze it, then cut rounds out of it while the others fiddle about with crumbling strips of dough. It is marvellous.
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