During filming on The Great British Bake Off, Ruby Tandoh was used to the rarified environment of the Bake Off tent, as well as the best kitchen equipment BBC budgets could buy. But the 2013 finalist reveals that when she went home to practise it was a very different story.
“At the end of each weekend of filming… I’d return to a very different world: a student kitchen so small that I couldn’t stretch out my arms or find space to store all the ingredients and equipment I needed,” says Tandoh, describing the "squalid, cramped flat” in which she did her preparation for the BBC2 show.
Writing in BBC Good Food Magazine, the philosophy student says she was forced to use an oven "so old that the numbers on the temperature dial had worn away" in a kitchen she believed was home to mice "or worse”.
But Tandoh says that aspiring bakers should take encouragement from her story. "Nobody should feel excluded from baking for not having a big kitchen or expensive equipment, a small budget or limited time," she says.
"If I could bake in that squalid, cramped flat, and on a student budget, then anyone can!"
Read Ruby Tandoh's full article in the new issue of BBC Good Food Magazine, on sale now