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No one is working late tonight in the Betta Living marketing team because the fourth series of The Great British Bake Off begins at 8pm on BBC Two.

We will be watching to see how the kitchens have been designed this year – plus some of the Betta Living team regard themselves as potential future contestants and will be checking out the competition!

To celebrate the return of our weekly TV baking treat here are the Betta Living team’s favourite baking recipes.

We'd like you to be our ‘Paul or Mary’ and tell us whose recipe makes the grade, the one that you would like to make for yourself and who will you be sending home?

Kirsty's Chocolate Biscuit Cake

 Kirsty

Kirsty was a Baker by name until she married Mr Hunt, but has she still got what it takes with her tiffin recipe… you decide?

My favourite recipe isn't actually a cake that needs 'baking' but I wanted to share it anyway because every time I make it people rave about it. The recipe is from my granny who was an amazing cook and she made this cake pretty much every week because we loved it so much! She called it No-bake Biscuit Crunch, but I like to call it Chocolate Biscuit Cake. Essentially it's a tiffin recipe, but I like to vary it so that's why it has its own name.

 

4 (large) tablespoons of Nestle condensed milk

8oz chocolate (I tend to do a mix of plain and milk - good quality though :))

4oz butter (I use spreadable butter vs hard)

1 small pack of digestive biscuits (or as as required) - crushed.

Large handful of raisins You can add Baileys or Brandy to make it extra special. Or add a few nuts as well.

Melt the chocolate and butter in basin over pan of hot water, then add the condensed milk. Fold in the biscuits and raisins. Leave to set in a tin lined with greaseproof paper. Enjoy!

Claire's Quiche Lorraine

 Claire

Served hot or cold Claire is confident her Quiche Lorraine will stand her in strong stead for the next round, do you agree?

This was one of the first things I made in Home Economics at school and the first evening meal I brought home for the family. Thankfully now I have my own kitchen to bake in rather than lugging the ingredients and the finished quiche home in a basket on the school bus!

 

 

Preheat your oven to 190C / 165C fan assisted / 375F/ gas mark 5 and put a baking tray inside to warm up. Grease with butter a 20cm / 8 inch flan dish.

For the pastry:  75g / 3oz unsalted butter, 175g / 6oz Plain Flour & 1 small egg, beaten

Make up the pastry by rubbing the butter into the flour then adding the egg to bind the pastry together. Knead it gently then place it in a plastic bag for 30 minutes. Then roll it out thin, lift and line and trim your flan tin. Pop in the fridge whilst you prepare the filling.

For the filling: 6 thin streaky bacon rashers 1 whole egg plus 3 extra egg yolks whisked together with 300ml / 1/2 pint double cream, Salt & pepper for seasoning

To prepare the filling, cut the bacon rashers into small strips and dry fry them in a hot dry pan, pat off the excess fat with kitchen towel.

Prick the chilled pastry case all over and evenly spread the bacon pieces inside and season with salt and pepper. Pour the whisked egg and cream mixture slowly into the flan dish. Place the flan dish on the baking tray and bake for 30-40 minutes, until the filling is fairly firm. Served hot or cold it is delicious!

Katie's Baked Alaska

 Katie

Warm on the outside and sweet in the middle, just like Katie herself, but does her Baked Alaska turn you hot or cold?  

Life is too short to make ice cream and on the basis I can't do it as well as Ben, Jerry, Häagen or Dazs so I don't, I buy a 500ml carton of my favourite vanilla! But all is forgiven I promise when you taste my meringue!

 

For the meringue you will need: 3 egg whites, 175g caster sugar, 20cm disc fatless sponge, Cherry jam, Flan case with trimmed edges.

Whisk the egg whites, in a clean, large bowl in an electric mixer on full speed until very stiff. Gradually add the sugar, a little at a time, and still on high speed, whisking well between each addition. Whisk until very, very stiff and glossy and all the sugar has been added – if in doubt whisk some more!

To build your Alaska, channel your inner Inuit and think igloo! Spread the disc of sponge generously with cherry jam and pile scoopfuls of the ice cream on top. Make sure you stay well within the edge of the sponge, the edges are the “melting zone”. Cover the ice cream completely with meringue so no gaps are showing, finishing in swirls. Return to the freezer, it can stay there for up to 24 hours.  

When you need it simply preheat the oven to 200°C/180°F/Gas Mark 6 and bake for about 8 minutes until a honey brown colour, serve straight away to the adoration of the crowd!

Barry's Pizza

 Barry Rourke

 

Barry finds his most of his baking inspiration via his iPad, but will his 21st Century approach to the traditional pizza be enough to go through to the next round?

Trust me this is the only pizza recipe you'll ever need, it is almost too good to share... but seeing as it's you I will! Once you've made this once you will agree this is the only pizza base recipe you'll ever need, you can tear up that Dominos menu as they just won't cut it anymore and your homemade pizza will be in the table in less than an hour too!

Barry finds his most of his baking inspiration via his iPad, but will his 21st Century approach to the traditional pizza be enough to go through to the next round?

Trust me this is the only pizza recipe you'll ever need, it is almost too good to share... but seeing as it's you I will! Once you've made this once you will agree this is the only pizza base recipe you'll ever need, you can tear up that Dominos menu as they just won't cut it anymore and your homemade pizza will be in the table in less than an hour too!

You will need: 375g (13 oz) plain flour, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 tablespoon caster sugar, 7g (1/4 oz) dried active baking yeast, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 225ml (8 fl oz) tepid water (when you put your hand in the water, it shouldn't feel hot or cold)

First mix the flour, salt, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl. Mix in oil and warm water and it will form into your dough, dough should be elastic & smooth add a bit more flour if sticky. No need to wait with this recipe just spread it out on a large pizza pan or baking sheet prick holes into the dough to stop bubbles and let any steam escape during baking and top as desired.

I keep mine simple with a tomato sauce, some splashes of pesto and buffalo mozzarella, but you can use anything that takes your fancy.

Bake at 190 C / Gas mark 5 for 20 to 25 minutes.

We look forward to hearing your thoughts Betta blog readers!

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