12 Best Christmas Desserts Inspired by the Great British Baking Show
Black Forest Cake II
This impressive cake is reminiscent of the Black Forest gateau that Mary Berry made for the Showstopper Challenge portion of Season 3's Cake episode. Here, too, recipe submitter Valinda's version showcases "wonderful chocolate layer cake soaked in Kirsch liqueur, with cherry filling."
Vanilla or Chocolate Tuiles
These tasty tuiles are a variation on the classic French tuiles featured as the Technical Challenge in the Biscuits and Traybakes episode of Season 2. Kevin Ryan submitted his version of vanilla or chocolate tuiles. "Tuile is the French term for 'tile,'" he explains. "These cookies are very pliable when still hot and are traditionally draped over a rolling pin. When cool, they would resemble the tiles on old French villas."
Cream Puff "Crack Buns" (Choux au Craquelin)
The Pastry episode of Season 2 featured choux buns as the technical challenge. With this version, Chef John gives a nod to the episode: "These gorgeous cream puff 'crack buns' were inspired by the Great British Baking Show, which is currently my favorite thing on television," he says. "Speaking of favorite things, Boston cream pie is one of my all-time favorite desserts, and this was basically an individually portioned, probably superior version of that."
White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
The Christmas episode of Season 1 featured a festive white chocolate cheesecake. With this recipe, you'll swirl raspberry sauce into the batter of a creamy white chocolate cheesecake. Recipe reviewer Arlene Murphy raves, "I made this cheesecake for a gourmet Italian feast for Christmas Eve. It was a big hit. We had several chefs, gourmet cooks there, and everyone agreed it was exceptional."
Vanilla Madeira Cake
Season 3's Signature Challenge showcased a lemon Madeira cake, the traditional English sponge cake that's similar to a pound cake. Here's a vanilla version. Recipe submitter shannoncody says, "This Madeira cake has a firm crust but is light and moist inside with a generous hint of vanilla."
Grandma's Bakewell Tart
Charming Bakewell, England, gives this classic tart its apt name. Mary's Bakewell Tart was featured in episode 5 of Season 4. Grandma's version dates to 1933, says the recipe submitter, DorsetJammer: "I have not changed the recipe and it makes a delicious tart, which I remember Grandma making for Sunday afternoon tea."
Season 3's Christmas episode featured a showstopping classic English trifle. This version of the lovely layered dessert features raspberries interspersed with pound cake, sweetened cream cheese, and whipped cream, topped with a dusting of cocoa. "Delicious," raves KAK1809. "The filling + raspberries essentially taste like raspberry cheesecake -- only better."
The quarterfinals of Season 1 featured a Povitica recipe as the technical challenge portion of the The Advanced Dough episode. Here's a popular version of this traditional Eastern European bread with a spiced raisin and nut filling. Recipe reviewer Kathy Vargocko Wilda gave it 5 stars: "The dough is wonderful, easy to make and wonderful to work with," she says. "And that means a lot because the rolling of the dough is the hardest and most time-consuming part."
The Christmas episode of Season 3 also featured a gorgeous Christmas pavlova. Here's a simplified version, with a crisp meringue layer topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit. "A beautiful, sublime Pavlova with a delicate crust and luscious, marshmallowy meringue inside," raves recipe reviewer ANN MARIE01. "I topped it with unsweetened whipped cream, kiwis, and strawberries. It was marvelous!"
Season 2's Christmas episode featured stollen, the traditional German Christmas yeast cake. The version we offer here hails from London's Dorchester Hotel. "I got this recipe while I was head baker at the hotel," says Lee Smith. "It's packed with dried fruit and filled with a marzipan surprise."
Christmas Gingerbread House
Season 2's Masterclass featured a magnificent gingerbread house created by Mary Berry. We offer a "yummy and simple recipe," says Jennifer Hale, who reviewed the recipe. "Perfect for making gingerbread houses. Soft inside but sturdy outside, it holds up well when putting up the walls." Check out tips for How to Make a Christmas Gingerbread House.
Portuguese Custard Tarts - Pasteis de Nata
The Pies and Tarts episode of Season 2 featured egg custard tarts as the technical challenge. These Portuguese custard tarts feature a rich eggy custard poured into pastry-lined muffin cups and baked to a beautiful finish. Recipe reviewer Ana Perry says, "These are just like the Pasteis I get from the bakery down the street. They are so yummy and easy to make."