Charlie's Cheesecake Wins Bake Off Battle

It wasn’t a piece of cake. It was aprons on and whisks at the ready for a morning of scrumptiously intense baking at the Royal Alexandra and Albert School.

The South East heat of the Boarding Schools' Association (BSA) Bake Off came to the School in Reigate on 26th May. It was the last leg of a competition that has gone all over the country and has seen pupils from eighteen different schools compete to be crowned BSA Bake Off champion. Pupils had an hour and a half to create delicious and aesthetically pleasing cakes, cupcakes, cookies or dessert tarts. There were strict guidelines for the judges to follow as they assessed each baked item; they had to consider the rise, texture, taste and the appearance of each cake.

Seven pupils from the School took part in the challenge to bake the winning dish. One of the standout cakes was a delicious triple chocolate creation carefully decorated with chocolate fingers and buttons, and fresh strawberries. It won Laura Bush, Year 10 pupil, a silver medal. She was joined on the baking podium by Year 7 pupil, Salisa Gurung who was awarded a bronze medal for her orange and white chocolate sponge cake.

There was a high standard with pupils from other schools presenting the judges with impressive cakes. In the end, it was a deceptively simple and very delicious cheesecake that took first place and made Charlie Bennett the winner. Charlie, also a Year 7 pupil, was delighted with her gold medal and being named overall South East heat winner. She said of her dessert, “I was up at 5am baking my cheesecake base to bring it in for the competition. I was worried that my cheesecake wouldn’t set during the allocated time but putting it in the freezer helped me get it right.” Charlie’s vanilla and summer fruits cheesecake was presented with a dusting of icing sugar, thin shortbread triangle and summery berry compote, all made by Charlie herself. All of her effort and prior preparation definitely paid off. Her cheesecake won the judges over with its silky texture and great flavour.

Charlie will now go on to the finals at Dorney Lake, Eton on 21st June. She will compete alongside seven other semi-finalists for the opportunity to be Bake Off champion and win some fantastic prizes including a gold Kitchen Aid.

Head of Food Technology, Mrs Yvonne West said the event, “I was incredibly proud of the students who took part in the Boarding Schools' Association Bake Off, their dedication from the outset in their planning and preparation was superb. Every dish presented to the judges reflected skill and attention to detail. It was an absolute privilege to be part of this event.”

27 May 2016

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