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Bake Off’s semi-final week sees another contestant sent home

Peter won a Hollywood handshake in the signature challenge.

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(C4/Love Productions/Mark Bourdillon/PA)

(C4/Love Productions/Mark Bourdillon/PA)

(C4/Love Productions/Mark Bourdillon/PA)

Hermine has been eliminated from The Great British Bake Off after failing to impress the judges during the semi-final patisserie week.

Despite specialising in French patisserie, the 39-year-old accountant from London struggled across three increasingly difficult challenges as temperatures rose in the tent amid a summer heatwave.

Peter was named star baker after winning a rare Hollywood handshake.

Speaking after leaving the tent, Hermine said: “I believe everything has a reason. It was the right time for me.”

The signature challenge saw the remaining four amateur bakers tasked with making savarin, a yeasted and enriched dough soaked in a syrup of their choosing.

But as temperatures rose they faced a difficult decision over how long to leave their dough to prove.

Despite specialising in French patisserie, Hermine failed to impress judges Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith.

The latter described her rum baba-style bake as “a little tough and too bread-like”.

However, Peter won a Hollywood handshake for his strawberry and elderflower baba with the long-standing judge telling him: “Welcome back to the tent.”

Leith said she was surprised Peter’s effort was so “delicious” despite him choosing not to use alcohol in the syrup.

In the technical challenge, the bakers made Danish cornucopia, a traditional and intricate celebration cake sometimes referred to as a “Horn Of Plenty”.

All four bakers struggled with the curved design with a confused Laura reduced to tears by the complicated recipe, branding the challenge “the worst yet”.

Although all the contestants failed to impress the judges, Peter claimed first place, while a disappointed Laura took fourth.

She continued to flounder during the showstopper in which they were tasked with making a cake comprising 25 mini-cubes over four and a half hours.

However, she spilled her chocolate sauce over her work surface and on to the floor.

Dave and Peter received glowing reviews from the judges, while Laura and Hermine found themselves at the bottom of the pile.

Peter, Laura and Dave will compete in the final on Channel 4 next Tuesday.

Production of the 11th series of Bake Off was initially delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, but filming of the Channel 4 programme finished near the end of August.

The bakers, presenters and others working on the programme formed a “bubble” in Down Hall Hotel near Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire, throughout the duration of filming, after being tested for the virus and self-isolating.

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