Posts by Carmen Croghan

‘The Great British Baking Show’ Season 5, Episode 5 Recap: Pie Week

Ryan's Key Lime Pie Showstopper (Photo Credit: Courtesy of © Love Productions, worldwide, all media in perpetuity)

Eight bakers arrived back in The Great British Baking Show marquee to take on the newest trilogy of Berry-Hollywood challenges. (Mel Giedroyc also made a welcome return.) At the half way point of the competition, things were getting serious for Pie Week. Not to be confused, of course, with pi week which celebrates the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Though if you think about it many pies are round… 

But I digress. Our octet of amateur bakers was handed three pie challenges, created for the purpose of separating the upper crust from those who would be eating humble pie.

'The Great British Baking Show' Season 5 Episode 4 Recap: Dessert Week

Nine bakers returned to The Great British Baking Show this week, intent on surviving the vaguely titled “dessert week”. Why this particular competition bears this name is something of a mystery.

Cakes, most tarts and some pies are desserts, after all. In fact, a majority of the challenges on The Great British Baking Show could technicallyfall into the dessert category. I guess it’s not ours to question why, only to witness the pursuit of baking perfection.  And thisw eek the bakers had to be perfect at whipping up torte, crème caramel and meringues. 

British Actors You Should Know: Andrew Garfield

In honor of July 4th, that most American of holidays, I thought it would be fitting to feature an actor with strong ties to the States in our British Actors You Should Know series. 

Andrew Garfield was born in Los Angeles to an English mother and an American-ish father (the elder Mr. Garfield was born in the US to English parents of Eastern European descent). Garfield's family moved from California to England when he was three years old and he was raised in Epsom, Surrey. He has dual citizenship and, as you are about to see in this sampling of roles, he seems more than comfortable switching from one continent (and accent) to another.

At only 34 years old, Garfield’s career has been impressive in its variety, not only in terms of roles, but also in the range of mediums, be it stage, television or film. 

'The Great British Baking Show' Season 5 Episode 2 Recap: Bread Week

The queen and king of baking, Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood (Photo Credit: Courtesy of © Love Productions, worldwide, all media in perpetuity)

A man named Paul Hollywood once said, “Understand bread, understand baking.” And in the second round of The Great British Baking Show, all the contestants were willing and “bagel” to demonstrate their bread making skills.

This week eleven bakers tackled the challenges of flavored flatbread, a complicated plaited loaf and a bevy of bagels in hopes of being named Star Baker or, at the very least, avoiding being sent home by Paul and Mary.

‘The Great British Baking Show’ Season 5 Episode 1 Recap : Cake Week

Sue, Mary, Paul and Mel return to PBS in a throwback season of The Great British Baking Show  Credit: Courtesy of © Love Productions, worldwide, all media in perpetuity

Cake, bread and pie lovers, rejoice! Our penchant for watching British people politely yet passionately baking in a tent will once again be satisfied thanks to the return of another season of The Great British Baking Show to PBS. 

In this season originally broadcast in in the UK in 2012, we are welcomed by the familiar faces of Paul, Mary, Sue and Mel.  The competition begins with cake week challenges that include fruited upside down cakes, rum babas and a cake that features a clever hidden design when sliced. On your marks, get set, BAKE!

Watch TV Like a Brit: BAFTA Winners You Can Stream

On Sunday evening the UK television industry honored their own at the Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards. Broadcast on BBC One, the BAFTA ceremony was held at the Royal Festival Hall in London and was hosted by former Great British Bake Off  (or Great British Baking Show to us Americans) presenter Sue Perkins. The complete list of winners, featuring access to all the acceptance speeches, can be found here

Considering American viewers may not be familiar with many of these programs, it seemed more appropriate to highlight those we can access rather than post the entire list of winners. Fortunately, with the creation of new streaming platforms and a proliferation of American partnerships with UK broadcasters, availability of British content in the US continues to grow every year. And I for one couldn’t be more pleased.

And now on to the winners…

The Windsor Family On-Screen: Royal Dramas (And A Sitcom) You Can Stream Right Now

It’s been an exciting few weeks for the British Royal Family of late. Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her 92nd birthday on April 21st. Two days later, Prince Louis, the third child of William and Kate (aka the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge) was born. And now in just about a week, William’s brother, Prince Harry, will wed American actress, Meghan Markle at Windsor Castle.

Such events are important milestones for any family, but when you’re as well-known as the Windsor clan, these occasions become a cause for world-wide celebration. So as we await all the romance and surprises that Harry and Meghan’s big day are sure to have in store, we've compiled a list of movies and TV series that you can stream right now to get in the Windsor frame of mind.

'Call the Midwife' Recap: Season 7 Episode 8

It;s a baby boom for Nurse Anderson (Leonie Elliott), Dr. Turner (Stephen McGann), Nurse Turner (Laura Main), Nurse Crane (Linda Bassett) and Nurse Dyer (Jennifer Kirby)  (Photo Credit: Courtesy of Neal Street Productions)

In the penultimate episode of Season 7, viewers endured the emotional rollercoaster of serious illness and the untimely death of Nurse Barbara Hereward played by Charlotte Ritchie. Other things happened which you can review here in our full recap, but mainly it was this tragedy and the tear-jerking aftermath that dominated episode seven.

This week we braced ourselves for an emotional Call the Midwife season finale. And while Barbara’s funeral was surprisingly brief, the episode was chockablock with new babies, a birthday celebration, a historical tragedy and poignant moments that honored our dearly departed midwife beautifully.

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