East-London born student Liam, or ‘Cake Boy’ to his friends (and now also to Twitter) was the youngest baker in the tent this year, making him a little-brother figure to his fellow bakers as well as to Noel and Sandi. Despite his punchy flavours impressing the judges, and even scooping Star Baker in Pastry Week, week eight’s Forgotten Bakes theme became a weekend Liam probably would prefer to forget, as his time in the tent came to an end.
We couldn’t possibly see him go without one last catch up.
Hi Liam! How are you feeling about leaving the Bake Off tent?
“I never imagined I would ever get to the quarter-finals – how mad is that? My target was to get past Bread Week and I thought I perhaps could get to Week six, and then when I got Star Baker in that week, I just didn’t know what the hell was going on! I didn’t want to follow the curse of Star Baker and get knocked out the next week, so I was crazy happy that I got through.”
What’s it like being ‘Cake Boy’?
“Now I am called Cake Boy even more at uni – and on social media. It’s nuts. Everyone has been so supportive, particularly when I was doing badly in Week 3, and Twitter and Instagram picked up on the facial expressions I make when the other bakers are getting judged. I do try and hide my expressions but it’s how I am, and people my age particularly pick up on it.”
You formed some pretty close bonds with the other bakers, didn’t you?
“Being the youngest baker in the tent had a massive part to play. It meant I got lots of mothering and fathering from the bakers, with some really good advice on baking and how to cope in the tent. Even though it’s a mixed age range, as bakers we all bonded together really well and still socialise.”
Let’s talk about your ‘pies’ and ‘doughs’, starting with the positives…
“My best moment probably has to be in the first week because obviously my first two challenges were very mediocre, and then to go from that to my Showstopper where Paul and Prue really praised it, I suddenly thought then that I am here for a reason. I started to feel a bit more confident and not so in awe of the other bakers.”
… and what about any dough moments?
“Bad moments include my Rum Nicky of course, and also when my jelly didn’t set in the Trifle Terrine, that has never happened to me before so I wasn’t sure why it didn’t set. I still don’t know!”
How was it juggling your everyday life with being on Bake Off?
“I’ve enjoyed uni so much, it was a huge jump for me after school. There was so much work doing exams and also being in the Bake Off. At the time I thought; “Why I am doing this to myself?”, but as it is with human nature, once it’s gone you really miss it. The experience was mad stressful at some points but looking back I would definitely do it all again.”
And how has the famous Cynthia reacted to your time on the show?
“I have had such great support from my friends and family – my mum and my nan have both cried tears of joy.”
“My main aim in life at the moment is to do the hard graft and work young, I am not a nerdy revisionist but at the same time I am not a slacker. You just have to get on and do what you have to do. I am not sure yet what the future holds, but in an ideal world I would love to combine drama and baking together, and over the next year I want to decide what I want to do.”
Liam – we’ll miss your face, your energy, and your bakes!