Great British Bake Off semi-finalist offers cooking inspiration to St Albans fans

PUBLISHED: 15:00 22 November 2016

Chetna Makan with Becky Alexander in Waterstones St Albans

Chetna Makan with Becky Alexander in Waterstones St Albans


Chetna Makan, semi-finalist on The Great British Bake Off 2014, came to Waterstones St Albans to talk about her new book The Cardamom Trail.

Herts Ad food columnist Becky Alexander hosted a Q&A with Chetna, and asked her about her time on the show, including what she thought would happen following its move to Channel 4.

Chetna told the audience that she still meets up with all the contestants from her year, and they have a Christmas get-together with their families planned for this week.

Chetna has a background in fashion and was very involved in the look of the book and attended the food photography, providing fabric for the backgrounds. The book features various cake recipes, many with spice, which is what Chetna was known for during her time on Bake-Off, such as lime and black sesame cake. There are also savoury and preserve recipes, based on Chetna’s family recipes.

As part of the evening, Waterstones hosted a bake-off competition which Chetna and Becky judged. The winners were Claire Thrift and Alison Feeney. All guests were given a little bag of cardamom pods to take home, hopefully inspired by their evening with Chetna to try something new in their own baking.

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I should probably have taken the hint! Walking out into the garden recently an unprecedented flock of thirty or more crows raucously greeted me from the treetops at the bottom of my garden. Cawing and croaking these big, black birds clung clumsily to the top most branches and twigs, jostling and flapping to stay balanced in a constant flurry of feathers. There is always something ominous about crows – they are after all carrion crows, the vultures of the bird world – always watching for scraps and weakness that might mean their next meal.

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