How Syabira Yusoff was crowned Bake Off 2022 winner in dramatic final
The Great British Bake Off has a new 2022 champion in Syabira Yusoff after 10 weeks of competitive cooking.
A tense final in the tent on Tuesday night saw the three contestants battle it out over a perfect picnic, a summer classic and a baked celebration of our planet.
And after deliberation by judges Paul Hollywood and Dame Prue Leith, Syabira’s unconventional flavours and unique baking earned her the culinary crown on the Channel 4 show.
Here’s how it all panned out in the final.
How Syabira cooked her way to the Great British Bake Off 2022 crown
From the 12 original Bake Off contestants this series, only three made it to the final – Syabira, Sandro and Abdul, who are all from London.
Syabira is a 32-year-old cardiovascular research assistant, Sandro is a 30-year-old nanny and Abdul is a 29-year-old electronics engineer.
The trio were asked to create a seasonal picnic from scratch for the signature challenge, a summer pudding bombe in the technical challenge, and then an edible sculpture of Our Beautiful Planet for the showstopper.
The three-hour signature task consisted of making six mini-cakes, six individual vegetarian pies and six finger sandwiches from a classic white loaf – making it “the most challenging signature ever seen in a bake-off final”.
The bakers had to use seasonal ingredients in an ode to sustainability.
Syabira created a “no porky pie” using aubergine and mushroom, and a broad bean with coriander paste and salsa verde heart-shaped sandwich which Dame Prue said was “unusual” but “really delicious”.
But she came second to Abdul in the technical challenge after her summer pudding bombe failed to set.
The showstopper proved the trickiest task for all three bakers and saw the return of presenter Noel Fielding to the tent in Welford Park, Berkshire. He had been absent during the filming of the first two tasks due to ill health.
Dame Prue described Abdul’s choux buns on his bumble bee-inspired display as a “proper failure,” but said his biscuits were a “triumph”.
Hollywood said Sandro’s final showstopper was “a bit messy” and his lemon sponge with a plum compote was five minutes overbaked, but the flavour was “amazing”. He added: “I think you’ve struggled on a few things today but you’ve managed to do quite a lot in the time.”
Syabira managed to impress with her orangutan holding up a forest. Hollywood praised the colours she had used but said the face of the animal could have had more work.
Judging the black-pepper-flavoured genoise sponge covered in a chocolate and hazelnut buttercream fur, he said: “It tastes delicious. It’s not the neatest thing I’ve seen, but your flavours are superb.”
Dame Prue described the orangutan’s head, made up of tarragon shortbread, as “lovely and buttery and very crisp”.
What was the reaction to the result?
On learning she had won, Syabira: “Thank you so much. I can’t believe it, honestly it hasn’t sunk in yet, this is the biggest achievement in my life. All the hard work, the trial and error, it has all been worth it. I am very, very proud.”
Speaking about being a Bake Off finalist, she had called it a “lottery jackpot” adding: “I’ve never been the top person in any kind of competition or any classes that I’ve attended so maybe baking is my hidden talent that I didn’t discover until recently.”
Malaysia-born Syabira moved to the UK in 2013 to study for a PhD and only began baking in 2017. She was named star baker three times during the course of the completion.
Praising her win, Hollywood said: “Some of the flavours we have never had in the tent before and are unlikely to have again, she is an incredible baker.”
Dame Prue said: “She is creative and she is careful, she practises like anything and she is imaginative, she just has the lot. She is a very skilful baker.”