A BAKER spoke of her delight at staring with Mary Berry on a Jubilee-themed Bake Off show on BBC1.

Composer and musician Kathryn MacLennan, from Didcot, baked a passion fruit and thyme frangipane tart for The Jubilee Pudding show after entering a competition on Instagram.

The 29-year-old oboe player, who lives her husband Mike and their two children Hugo, four, and Oscar, who is nine months, has been a keen baker all her life and said she entered "for a bit of fun".

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Oxford Mail: Kathryn MacLennanKathryn MacLennan

She said: "At the time I entered there wasn't a television show so I just did it as a bit of fun to create a new recipe.

"When Hugo was born, Mike and I wanted a new hobby so we decided to learn how to do food photography and the competition fell into place nicely with that.

"It wasn't until I found out I was in the top 50 that I found out about the television show. I then got a call saying that the royal chef had been through all our applications and wanted to call us the next day with the question.

"I stayed up all night thinking about what the question could be and then on Zoom the next day they said I was in the top five and I was so shocked."

Mrs MacLennan filmed the show in March with judges Mary Berry and Masterchef star Monica Galetti.

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Oxford Mail: The finalists The finalists

"It was really strange compared to baking at home," she said. "At home you have your music on and you take breaks but you're aware of the cameras and don't want to be caught lounging.

"Also you had Mary and Monique right in front of you and it was so surreal. It was really exciting and there was so much adrenaline to it.

"I don't think any of us slept for two days beforehand so at the end we were all just knackered. We all felt so emotional but I was really happy that we all got on."

The baker said meeting Dame Mary was her favourite moment and remembers walking past her getting her make-up done.

Oxford Mail: The tart Kathryn MacLennan said she made everyday up until the competitionThe tart Kathryn MacLennan said she made everyday up until the competition

She added: “Friends and family were all surprised as I’m notoriously bad at keeping a secret. My friend thought I was pregnant, and my neighbours saw the cameras and said, ‘You’re on wife swap aren’t you?’

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“It was so fun when they found out. I’ve baked since I was a kid, I always used to make my own birthday cakes.”

To watch the show, visit BBC iPlayer.


Read more from this author

This story was written by Gee Harland, she joined the team in 2022 as a senior multimedia reporter.

Gee covers Wallingford and Didcot.

Get in touch with her by emailing: Gee.harland@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @Geeharland

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