Great British Bake Off faves on London’s best desserts

Lifestyle

Chef Adrien Clauwaert, Selasi Gbormittah, Benjamina Ebuehi and Chef Aleece Alexander at the Due by Dolce Biscotti Bake OffChef Adrien Clauwaert, Selasi Gbormittah, Benjamina Ebuehi and Chef Aleece Alexander at the Due by Dolce Biscotti Bake Off — Photo courtesy of 90 Seconds for Dolce Hotels & Resorts by Wyndham

Four years after they competed on Series 7 of “The Great British Bake Off,” fan favorites Benjamina Ebuehi and Selasi Gbormittah are as popular as ever.

The two friends – so close during the show that they were often referred to as #Benjalasi – continue to celebrate each other’s successes, including Ebuehi’s cookbook, “The New Way to Cake,” and Gbormittah’s partnership with @vitacocoeu.

They also champion their fellow bakers, and are happy to share their recommendations for the best desserts in London.

In their own words, here are the bakeries that these beloved GBBO contestants call their favorites (or, rather, favourites).

Benjamina: Luminary Bakery

Carrot cake from Luminary BakeryCarrot cake from Luminary Bakery — Photo courtesy of Rye London

The carrot cake at Luminary Bakery is one of my favourites in London; not too sweet, plenty of spice, and perfectly moist.

Luminary Bakery is a social enterprise that supports disadvantaged women, meaning that your purchases in the cafe go towards a great cause!

Benjamina: Ottolenghi

Chocolate Guinness Cake with Baileys CreamChocolate Guinness Cake with Baileys Cream — Photo courtesy of Sweet by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh (Ten Speed Press); photo Peden + Munk

The cake counter at Ottolenghi is pretty iconic and it’s always difficult to decide what to go for.

One of the cakes I love the most, though, is the Chocolate Guinness Cake with Baileys Cream. Incredibly rich with a smooth and creamy centre, it’s perfect for any chocolate lovers.

Benjamina: Miel Bakery

Palmiers from Miel BakeryPalmiers from Miel Bakery — Photo courtesy of Miel Bakery

For a little slice of France, there’s no place like Miel Bakery. It’s a tiny little bakery that produces fresh bakes and classic patisserie throughout the day.

My go-tos are the palmiers. So simple but they’re incredibly buttery with just the right amount of chew and caramelisation. The caneles are also a must.

Benjamina: Crosstown Doughnuts

Matcha cake doughnut from Crosstown DoughnutsMatcha cake doughnut from Crosstown Doughnuts — Photo courtesy of Crosstown Doughnuts

Doughnuts are always a good idea and the matcha cake doughnut from Crosstown is a winner. It’s covered in a matcha & white chocolate ganache that perfectly balances sweetness and the slight bitterness from the tea.

Benjamina: Bao

Fried Horlicks Ice Cream Bao from BaoFried Horlicks Ice Cream Bao from Bao — Photo courtesy of Carol Sachs

This Taiwanese restaurant serves some of the best bao buns in London.

They only have one dessert on the menu – the Fried Horlicks Ice Cream Bao – and it’s the only one you need. The ice cream is silky smooth with a deep malty flavour that I love. It sits inside a soft, deep fried bun and is so moreish you’ll be tempted to order another.

Selasi: Lily Vanilli Bakery

Chocolate chip cookies from Lily Vanilli — Photo courtesy of @lily_vanilli_cake

This gem is found tucked away in a courtyard in East London, just yards away from Columbia Road Flower Market. It’s far from home for me but always worth the visit.

Self-taught wonder, Lily Jones, has built a reputation for herself by creating bespoke cakes to order. Thankfully, her bakery is open to the public on Sundays, so everyone can enjoy her freshly-baked delights.

My favourite from her savoury range is definitely the sausage rolls: crispy, flaky pastry with a very generous meat and bacon filling. It is to die for. As a sweet treat, you must try Lily’s Einkorn chocolate chip cookies. Gooey, sweet and salty – I 100% recommend them.

Selasi: Happy Endings London

The Strawberry Shorty from Happy Endings LondonThe Strawberry Shorty from Happy Endings London — Photo courtesy of Katie Wilson

For a guy who favours West London so much, I tend to find myself in East London quite often because I’m happy to travel for food.

And who can resist soft serve ice cream sandwiches? Not me – especially the ones at Happy Endings.

You can choose the Malty One, the Naughty One, Tres Leches or Negroni, but my personal favourite is the Strawberry Shorty. It’s strawberry cheesecake parfait with vanilla marshmallow, strawberry jam and dark chocolate inside a sweet brown sugar biscuit. Say no more.

Selasi: Pophams

PBJ from PophamsPBJ from Pophams — Photo courtesy of Pophams

This cosy bakery at Islington and Hackney has become widely known – deservedly – for its amazing artisan hand-crafted pastries.

The PBJ is a must: layers of flaky puff pastry, peanut butter and jam topped with banana. What’s not to love about this classic? These flavours are an old favorite, and Pophams presents them so well and with such pride. For those who favour the savoury side of things, I have to recommend the rosemary and sea salt twist. Mmmmm.

Selasi: Andaz Hotel

James Clarke's white sourdough breadJames Clarke’s white sourdough bread — Photo courtesy of James Clarke

Okay, I know this is not a bakery but James Clarke, head pastry chef at the Andaz Hotel on Liverpool Street, is a true master. He was the Executive Pastry Chef at Dominique Ansel Bakery in Belgravia and produces amazing baked goods.

Clarke’s 100% white sourdough is, hands down, the best bread in the city of London. It’s so good, I would happily make it my dessert.

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