Hollywood hails ‘highest standard’ yet on Bake Off

Embargoed to 0001 Tuesday August 22''Undated handout photo issued by Channel 4 of the judges and presenters for The Great British Bake Off (left to right) Noel Fielding, Sandi Toksvig, Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith. Paul Hollywood has insisted that viewers will not notice any difference with The Great British Bake Off "within 10 minutes" of the first episode of the new series. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday August 22, 2017. The popular cookery programme was sold last year to Channel 4 after having its home at the BBC since 2010, much to the anguish of many fans. See PA story SHOWBIZ BakeOff. Photo credit should read: Channel 4/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Embargoed to 0001 Tuesday August 22''Undated handout photo issued by Channel 4 of the judges and presenters for The Great British Bake Off (left to right) Noel Fielding, Sandi Toksvig, Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith. Paul Hollywood has insisted that viewers will not notice any difference with The Great British Bake Off "within 10 minutes" of the first episode of the new series. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday August 22, 2017. The popular cookery programme was sold last year to Channel 4 after having its home at the BBC since 2010, much to the anguish of many fans. See PA story SHOWBIZ BakeOff. Photo credit should read: Channel 4/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

The new series of The Great British Bake Off has the “highest standard” of bakers the show has ever seen, said an “amazed” Paul Hollywood.

The TV judge has also revealed that in one week he gave out four of his “Hollywood handshakes” – his ultimate, and rare, sign of approval.

Embargoed to 0001 Tuesday August 22''NO SALES, NO ARCHIVE. CAN ONLY BE USED IN CONNECTION WITH CHANNEL 4'S THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF''Channel 4 undated handout photo of (left to right) Steven, Tom, Julia, Liam, Kate, Sophie, Stacey, Peter, Flo, James, Yan and Chris (no surnames given), the contestants in Channel 4's cookery contest, The Great British Bake Off. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday August 22, 2017. See PA story SHOWBIZ Bake Off Contestants. Photo credit should read: Mark Bourdillon/Channel 4 Television/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

Embargoed to 0001 Tuesday August 22''NO SALES, NO ARCHIVE. CAN ONLY BE USED IN CONNECTION WITH CHANNEL 4'S THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF''Channel 4 undated handout photo of (left to right) Steven, Tom, Julia, Liam, Kate, Sophie, Stacey, Peter, Flo, James, Yan and Chris (no surnames given), the contestants in Channel 4's cookery contest, The Great British Bake Off. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday August 22, 2017. See PA story SHOWBIZ Bake Off Contestants. Photo credit should read: Mark Bourdillon/Channel 4 Television/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

Hollywood, who is the only returning star of the baking show following its controversial shift from BBC One to Channel 4, said: “Every single week this year has been better than any others we’ve done.

“The standard of the baking this year was annoyingly good. I mean that in a nice way because there were just like, ‘how did you do that? Where did you people come from?’.”

He said contestants impressed in the Bake Off tent with “new techniques, new flavours, new ideas” and how to do things properly.

Having such a high quality of bakers proved tricky for judges, though, with Bake Off stalwart Hollywood admitting it had been tougher than ever before.

He said: “I gave out four handshakes once, one week. That’s never happened again, so I’ve moved the bar up again.”

The Great British Bake Off begins next Tuesday at 8pm.