Amateur baker Alice Chan on making history in the SA Bake Off tent


Cape Town – History was made in the Great South African Bake Off tent on Tuesday when contestant Alice Chan won Star Baker for a third time.

The senior lecturer and researcher from Pretoria took Chocolate Week by storm with her Ubuntu chocolate brownies and blondies and her Death by Chocolate Showstopper making her the ultimate star of SA Bake Off.

From sharing the inspiration for every story behind her bakes to how she feels about making SA Bake Off history, Alice has only good things to say about her experience in the tent.

sa bake off, alice chan


How does it feel to have won Star Baker three times?

I felt so honoured to be the first baker to win Star Baker three times in the history of SA Bake Off. BBC has provided a platform to explore my potential in baking and my ingenuity approach to each of my bakes. I hope with this achievement I can inspire more people to fall in love with baking.

Do you feel winning Star Baker three times has given you an advantage in the tent? 

Each challenge is a unique one of its own, although I won Star Baker for Cake, Dessert and Chocolate Week, I still need to do my best for the next episode in order to stay in the tent. I love baking so much and the only reason I want to stay in the tent is not the trophy at the end, but to continue baking and show the audience all my wonderful creations. 

What is the inspiration behind the stories you have for each bake?

My inspiration comes from my own personal experiences and most importantly the beautiful African and Asian culture that I am embedded in. I believe that if one appreciates the environment and what it tries to teach you, one’s mind becomes more creative and open. Before I design my bake, I think first what story I want to portray to the viewers and then I design all the elements around it. I think a bake with a story makes it more meaningful and can be resided in one’s heart even after it’s consumed.

sa bake off, alice chan


Which bake have you enjoyed most, so far?

I enjoyed bakes that I designed an  African theme for, e.g. the Three Rondavels (in the cake week), the African Sun Malva pudding (in the dessert week) and the Ubuntu brownies/blondies (in the chocolate week).  I want to show the world how beautiful Africa and its culture is. I always tell people that I may look Asian but my soul is African.

If you had to eat one type of chocolate for the rest of your life, which would it be and why?

I would choose bitter chocolate (with 80% or more cocoa content). I think in life one needs to taste something bitter to appreciate the sweet things. Moreover, bitter things (experiences) can have depth of flavour if you taste it with heart and explore it with an open mind.

sa bake off, alice chan

(Photos: Supplied by BBC)

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