Celebrity Best Home Cook episode 8: Three celebrities have reached the final of the first-ever Celebrity Best Home Cook, and Claudia Winkleman welcomes them back into the kitchen for one last time. This time, they face Chris Bavin’s Rustle Up challenge first. Chris provides the cooks with a butternut squash, and for an added twist announces that whoever cooks the best dish will avoid the Eliminator and go straight through to tomorrow’s decisive Ultimate challenge.
After an initial panic, the cooks find their rhythm and produce three outstanding dishes, leaving the judges to choose their favourite from a sweet butternut squash pie and two Thai-inspired curries. Once the Rustle Up winner is chosen, the two other contestants face Angela Hartnett’s Eliminator challenge. She sets her most difficult recipe ever, one that involves the cooks making choux pastry, caramel and a dessert centrepiece fitting for the most glamorous of celebrations. Whoever survives this challenge will return for Mary Berry’s Ultimate challenge. On day two of the final, Mary asks the two contenders to produce their ultimate picnic. They must prepare four items, including one sweet item, one meat, one plant-based and one fish. A host of familiar faces return to support the cooks, as the judges announce the first ever Celebrity Best Home Cook.
Celebrity Best Home Cook episode 8 recipes:
Banana loaf with cream cheese icing
Dense and moist, this banana loaf is even more irresistible with a cupcake-style cream cheese icing.
- Preheat the oven to 170C/150C Fan/Gas 3. Grease a 900g/2lb loaf tin and line with baking paper.
- Whisk together the oil, brown sugar, vanilla extract and eggs in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, mash the bananas with a fork until smooth, then stir in the yoghurt. Sift in the bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt and stir to mix.
- Add the egg mixture to the banana and stir together, then fold in the flour and raisins until well combined. Pour into the prepared tin and sprinkle with the caster sugar.
- Bake for 1 hour, until well risen and golden brown. A skewer inserted into the centre should come out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 10–15 minutes, then remove from the tin and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.
- To make the icing, whisk all the ingredients together in a large bowl, until creamy and smooth and soft peaks form when the whisk is lifted.
- Put the banana bread on a serving plate. Spread the cream cheese icing over the top in billowing waves.
- If you would like to decorate further, put the banana halves on a heatproof plate and sprinkle with the light brown sugar. Using a blowtorch, hold the flame just above the banana until all the sugar has caramelised. Arrange the caramelised banana halves on top of the banana bread and grate over the chocolate.
Chocolate orange curd cake
This easy cake makes the most of the combination with a fluffy chocolate orange sponge and zingy orange curd and cream filling. Chocolate and orange are a match made in heaven.
- Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Grease two 20cm/8in round cake tins and line the bases with baking paper.
- Whisk together all the sponge ingredients with an electric mixer until fully combined. Divide the mixture between the prepared tins. Bake for 25 minutes, or until cooked through – the tops should spring back when lightly pressed. Leave to cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the filling, whisk the cream until it forms soft peaks when the whisk is lifted. Add the orange curd and very lightly fold to create a ripple effect through the cream.
- Put one sponge on a serving plate and spread with the orange curd cream. Top with the second sponge to sandwich the cakes together.
- To make the glacé icing, mix the ingredients together, adding more icing sugar or orange juice until the icing is smooth and thick but easily spreadable. Carefully spread over the top of the cake and sprinkle over the grated chocolate.
Gruyère scones – Celebrity Best Home Cook episode 8
Slather these gruyère scones with butter or cream cheese, or serve them as they are, with soup, in a lunchbox, or piled on a plate for afternoon tea.
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6. Line two baking trays with baking paper.
- Sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the salt and butter and rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the grated gruyère.
- Gradually pour in the milk, stirring with a knife until the mixture comes together to form a rough, soft dough. You might not need all the milk.
- Lightly dust a work surface with flour and roll out the dough to 3–4cm/1¼–1½in thick. Cut out discs using a 5–6cm/2–2½in round pastry cutter. Press the offcuts together and re-roll to make as many scones as you can.
- Place the scones on the baking trays and lightly brush the tops with a little milk. Scatter over the Parmesan. Bake for 15–20 minutes, until well risen and golden-brown. Cool on a wire rack.
Chargrilled broccoli salad – Celebrity Best Home Cook episode 8
This chargrilled broccoli salad with asparagus and a zingy dressing makes a simple side dish for a barbecue or picnic.
- Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Blanch the broccoli for 1–2 minutes. Add the asparagus to the pan and blanch for a further 2 minutes. Drain and leave to cool slightly.
- Heat a large griddle pan over a high heat. Drizzle the broccoli and asparagus with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Place the vegetables in the griddle pan and cook for 1–2 minutes on each side, until lightly charred.
- Mix 2 tablespoons of olive oil with the garlic, chilli, lemon zest and juice. Pour into the griddle pan and heat for a minute or two, stirring to coat the vegetables. Add the lemon slices and chargrill for 1–2 minutes on each side, until charred.
- Transfer the chargrilled broccoli, asparagus and lemon slices to a serving plate and scatter with the flaked almonds.