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A Look at Bake Off’s Vegan Week
Deputy Editor Kat Smith takes a look at The Great British Bake Off's take on veganism
Bake-Off is frequently dubbed the definition of wholesome, with it bursting at the seams with heart-warming quotes, happy tears and quite simply, the intrinsically lovely act of baking.
In some ways, the introduction of a vegan week for this series of GBBO is another reason why the nation’s favourite baking show is just that. Being an on/off vegan and a full-time veggie aware of the horrors behind the bakers’ eggs and butter, I sometimes find it frustrating to watch. It can feel like a display of ignorance. The worst was the Victorian week with game pies, making the Bake Off tent feel unwelcome for vegetarians, let alone vegans.
In 2016, we got a glimpse of hope when previously plant-based baker Rav got selected for the show, but it was disappointing when his predominantly vegan diet failed to translate to the screen. It’s not clear whether this was his choice or whether animal products are a compulsory part of the TV show. Either way, traditional baking with traditional ingredients seemed to be a persisting theme in GBBO.
“At first sight, it seemed like a momentous leap in the right direction. Now, it feels like a mere minor step towards appeasement
There’s also the matter of execution; how will veganism be presented in the challenges? Will it be this inaccessible diet where restriction reigns, or will it be shown to be an exciting and new way to bake? Time will soon tell.