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Great British Bake Off final

by Sarah Randell

Like the rest of the UK population, we were glued to the grand final of the Great British Bake Off. It was handwhisks at dawn for James, John and Brendan as they baked airy sponges, created intricate fondant fancies and whipped up billowy meringues in the battle to be crowned this year's winner. But it was John who impressed Paul and Mary the most!

We loved the pithivier challenge (that’s making a sweet puff-pastry pie to you and me), and so we asked the master himself, Paul Hollywood, to share his traditional recipe so we can all have a slice of GBBO action. Let us know which contestant’s pithivier you think was the best in the comments box below.


Serves 6-8

Recipe extracted from How to Bake by Paul Hollywood (Bloomsbury, £20)

We're giving away 2 SIGNED COPIES of How To Bake by Paul Hollywood! To enter the prize draw click on this link and fill out the form: Kitchen Secrets How To Bake prize draw


  • 500g ready-made puff pastry
  • flour, for dusting
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten, for glazing
  • icing sugar, for dusting
  • For the filling:
  • 140g unsalted butter, softened
  • 140g caster sugar
  • 2 medium eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbsp dark rum
  • finely grated zest of 1 small orange
  • 140g ground almonds
  • 20g plain flour


  1. Line a baking tray with baking paper or silicone paper.
  2. For the filling, beat the butter and caster sugar together in a large bowl until creamy. Mix in the eggs, rum and orange zest, then fold in the ground almonds and flour.
  3. Roll out half the pastry on a lightly floured surface to about 3mm thick.
  4. Using a large plate as a guide, cut a 28cm round out of the pastry and put it on the prepared baking tray.
  5. Spread the filling over the pastry, leaving a clean 2cm margin around the edge.
  6. Brush the pastry edge with some of the beaten egg.
  7. Roll out the remaining pastry and cut out another 28cm circle. Lay this on top of the filling and press the edges of both pieces of pastry firmly together to seal.
  8. Chill for at least 1 hour.
  9. Preheat the oven to 220°C, fan 200°C, gas 7.
  10. Brush the pastry all over with the remaining beaten egg and bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden.
  11. Leave to cool, then dust the pie with icing sugar to serve.

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