One of the contestants in this year’s season of The Great British Baking Show is a left below-knee amputee named Marc Elliott. We’re tracking his progress through the season, while sharing favorite recipes from limb-different bakers in the Amplitude community.
Marc advanced easily into the final 6, knocking it outasight again in the Showstopper with a Kawaii cake styled after his dog, Hamish (a border terrier). Although he has largely flown under the radar through the first six weeks, half the field is now gone and Marc is still rolling, kneading, and icing away. Like all the remaining contestants, he now has to be regarded as a serious contender to make the Finals, which will air in three weeks.
Distractify.com ran a nice little profile of Marc with a few details we weren’t already aware of. We learned, for example, that “Marc is a man of many talents. In addition to his baking, he’s a support worker, a bronze resin sculptor, a mountain climber, a landscape photographer, and a single parent.” The article also notes, “Marc joined The Great British Bake Off to show his daughters that they can achieve whatever they set their mind to, obstacles be damned.”
Next on the schedule: Eighties week. Ugh. Not our favorite decade . . . . we hope Marc is up to the task.
This Week’s Recipe: Excel Sponge Cake
Our guest contribution this week comes all the way from Nigeria, courtesy of Aver Akighir. She’s the proprietor of Aver Cakes and Pastries in Abuja, and her cakes are gorgeous works of art—the kind of creations that are so beautiful, you hate to slice into them. Check out Akighir’s Instagram feed and see for yourself.
Akighir also is one of Nigeria’s leading amputee advocates. She’s the head of a foundation called the Possibilities Initiative that provides job training for people with disabilities; a board member of the Amputee Coalition of Nigeria; and founder of a support group for disabled girls called Diva’s Hangout.
“My disability didn’t stop me from anything, not even my education,” she told Qualitative Magazine. “I want to be a bridge between the world and persons with disabilities, [to] advocate for a more inclusive society. Always believe in yourself, and the sky will be your starting point.”
Akighir’s recipe this week is for an an exceptionally light, fluffy cake that uses an emulsifier called Excel Sponge, which AllRecipes-Web calls “one of the most favored current trending foods on earth.” This product is prevalent in Nigeria and Great Britain but not easy to find within the US; we located one Japanese supplier online, and another in Lagos. All amounts in Akighir’s recipe are metric.
250 g flour
200 g margarine
150 g sugar
200 g eggs
63 ml water
12 g Excel Sponge
10 g baking powder
4 drops vanilla extract
50 g milk
1) Grease the pan you want to use and set aside.
2) Mix the Excel Sponge to your eggs and whisk it well.
3) Add your preservatives to your flour and mix well.
4) Put your butter and sugar in the blender bowl mix it until it’s fluffy.
5) Add half of your eggs to the fluffy butter and sugar and mix well.
6) Add half of your flour to the eggs, butter and sugar and mix well.
7) Add the remaining ingredients as you did earlier, then you mix gently.
8) Put the mixture in your greased pan and place it straight into your oven
9) Bake at 350 degrees.
Previous Amputee Bake Off recipes:
Moroccan Yogurt Pound Cake by RonyRon
Chocolate Eclair Cake by Angie Heuser
Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Syrup by Broken Breadhaus
Very Carroty Carrot Cake by @cy_eats
Lemon-meringue Pie by Stump Kitchen