Bake Off winner visits Sidmouth

Frances Quinn spoke at the last Kennaway House authour talk.

Frances Quinn spoke at the last Kennaway House authour talk. - Credit: Archant

A Great British Bake Off winner whipped up a storm for budding bakers as she revealed how she gets her inspiration for her unique creations.

Frances Quinn visited Sidmouth to speak about her book, Quinntessential Baking, as the last of this year’s Kennaway House’s series of popular Meet the Author talks.

The youngest of five children, Frances studied design before working at Joules. Her bakes, which she concocted ‘in the early hours’, made her co-workers push her to apply for the hit show, which she truimphed in in 2013.

“I cannot believe it’s been three years. I had the application put into my hand and I thought it was a way to express my creativity,” said Frances, “It was the best and worst experience of my life. It was a baking bootcamp.”

Frances was often praised for her unique designs, which she has continued into her work outside of the Bake Off tent.

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Talking about her book, Frances said she took a hands-on approach designing the illustrations and creating the recipes with twists on classic bakes, adding: “It’s quintessential, it’s my take on the traditional, taking things that everybody likes to bake and doing something different.”

Frances said she takes inspiration from film, art and sport and has a notepad to jot down her designs before heading to the kitchen to perfect them.

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“I’m loving still learning, I was an amateur baker in the Bake Off tent, I had to learn about bread and pastry and I still feel there’s so much to learn.

“Sometimes things go wrong and that can lend to a better design.”

Meet the Author organiser Kate Norbury said: “What they have to go through to get into the Bake Off to begin with and the almost endurance test through the weeks was very revealing.

“Having had Mary Berry right at the beginning of the first series, Sidmouth has been keen followers ever since, so we felt Frances gave the programme a fitting closure.”

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