The return of Great British Bake Off is less than a week away, and judges Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith have revealed we’re in for some major format shake-ups and surprises.
Speaking at the launch of 2018’s series at Channel 4’s headquarters, here’s what they revealed we can expect…
There will be both a Danish and a vegan week
This year’s Great British Bake Off will experiment with new themed weeks.
In tribute to Toksvig’s English-Danish heritage and the hygge trend viewers can expect a Danish themed week. And after the many rumours over the last few weeks, we can confirm there will indeed be a vegan themed week.
Judge Paul Hollywood explained the decision to include veganism in the series: “We wanted something different and something to represent what was happening in this country. Veganism is something that seems to be growing. That’s why it is in.
If you are a vegan or you’re thinking about it and are just worried about how it is going to change your life, watch it and see. It fascinated me, totally … shocked me as well.”
Prue’s Twitter mishap will be directly addressed
Great British Bake Off judge Prue Leith was front and centre of a massive Twitter mishap on last year’s Great British Bake Off finale. The 78-year-old was on holiday in Bhutan when she accidentally announced that year’s winner Sophie Faldo – hours before the finale aired.
Claiming she was confused over the time difference, this year’s Great British Bake Off’s opening episode doesn’t shy away from the gaffe. Instead, it is embraced whole heartedly, with hosts Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig poking fun with a Bake to the Future sketch.
In the sketch, Fielding and Toksvig attempt to travel back in time to try and stop Leith from posting the ill-fated tweet.
When asked about what Leith made of the skit, she said: “They didn’t propose it they just did it! My reaction would have been, I wouldn’t dare mention this for a whole year and then you go and use it.
Now everybody will start bringing it up again. Sure enough, I’m getting people saying to me ‘tell me about the results’.”
We can expect plenty more innuendos
Great British Bake Off isn’t just known for its delicious results, viewers love the banter between the judges, hosts and contestants – and of course the inevitable innuendos.
And there’s a taste of the hilarities set to come in the very opening episode, with one contestant baking the image of his baby, which unfortunately looks very much like ‘something else.’
Leith said the cheeky banter is a key part of the show and even quipped, “We don’t cook them up, you know no one tries to, they just happen, don’t worry, you’ll get some!”
Hollywood added that while the innuendos are hilarious, he doesn’t view them as essential: “I think innuendo is funny. I suppose it’s been part of Bake Off for a few years, but it’s not the be-all and end-all in Bake Off,” he said.
We’ll see a ‘tougher’ Prue
Returning for her second series, Leith said we can expect a more confident and assertive side to her: “I think because I am more relaxed and a little bit more confident, I’ve been straighter. I’ve found it easier.
“Whereas last series I would tell them lots of things that are nice before I have to say anything nasty. Paul is always saying ‘Don’t say so much, just say it.”
Paul’s handshake will make a comeback
Paul Hollywood’s signature handshake has become synonymous with Great British Bake Off. His extended firm shake is often seen as the judge’s ultimate seal of approval, and is reserved for what he regards as the very best culinary offerings on the series.
While his handshake doesn’t make an appearance on the opening episode, Hollywood said it will make a comeback: “There will be quite a few. I give a handshake when I think they deserve a handshake and it’s all down to the bake, the flavour, what they’ve created is it unique is it different. Is it perfect and is it professional.
The aim is to get people to bake, and with the handshake, it’s just that I thought they deserved it and I just want to say well done,” he explained.
Leith added she enjoys seeing the handshake as much as the contestants do receiving it: “There’s something funny about watching Paul give a handshake because you can tell he really doesn’t want to. And then he just knows it’s perfect and he has to put his hand there.”
Great British Bake Off returns Tuesday August 28 at 8pm on Channel 4.