In a Bake Off first, the entire episode is devoted to the period of history that gave birth to modern baking - the Victorian era.
The signature challenge is a stalwart of the Victorian dinner table, game pie. Pie moulds, pheasant, pigeon and pastry are the order of the day as the bakers must create beautifully decorated pies, stuffed with all manner of game to tantalise the judges' taste buds. For one it's the chance to use a genuine antique from 1850, while others take a more modern approach and dabble with spices.
Mary dusts off her antique cookbooks to find a technical recipe that dates back to the late 1800s. The bakers battle with time as they must first make a perfect fruit cake, and then create their own sugar paste and marzipan and indulge in some very detailed royal icing in a bid to create a cake that resembles a tennis court.
For the show-stopper, the bakers make charlotte russe, a dessert much loved by the Victorians which has a silky bavarois centre surrounded by sponge fingers and topped with jelly. A tricky construction at the best of the times, but the added pressure of the Bake Off tent takes its toll as not everyone manages to get their jelly to set or the charlotte russe to stay standing. Although one baker does manage to create a masterpiece that even Queen Victoria herself would have found amusing.
Aired: 16 Sep 2015