'Great British Bake Off' 2021: Who are the finalists?

·TV Reporter
·4 min read
Which bakers made it to the final? (Channel 4)
Which bakers made it to the final? (Channel 4)

Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith have chosen the Great British Bake Off 2021 finalists after a nail-biting semi-final that left them struggling to decide who should fall at the final hurdle.

In the show's most skilful episode ever, patisserie week saw three of the four bakers win Hollywood Handshakes just in the first task - but eventually the judges settled on Jurgen Krauss to be eliminated, a shock to the bakers and viewers.

Read more: Bake Off best ever semi-final sees record number of Hollywood Handshakes

That leaves Chigs Parmar, Giuseppe Dell'Anno and Crystelle Pereira battling it out in the final next week to be named Star Baker 2021.

'Bake Off' 2021's finalists. (Channel 4)
'Bake Off' 2021's finalists. (Channel 4)

Chigs has had a meteoric rise to tent success, having only taken up baking for the first time during lockdown last year.

The 40-year-old sales manager from Leicestershire learned his craft from online videos, but has barely put a foot wrong in the tent, going from strength to strength each week with his incredibly neat and professional-looking creations.

He had a mixed semi-final, winning a Hollywood Handshake in the first task but then coming last in the technical, saying: "Out of the 26 bakes we've done, that was my worst one."

Chigs pulled it back in the showstopper with Hollywood telling him: "You've really been on a journey, Chigs. You only started baking last year and look what you've done."

Giuseppe, a 45-year-old Italian chief engineer living in Bristol, has been one of the competition favourites since the start.

Read more: Bake Off stars call for a return to realistic challenges

His technically proficient bakes and excellent flavours have seen him rise to the top of the contest, but he had a shaky moment in the semi-final showstopper when his flavours didn't come through strongly enough.

Giuseppe admitted: "I had to buy new clothes because I wasn't expecting to make it this far."

Crystelle, 26, began the semi-final convinced that she would be out in patisserie week, but amazed the judges with a showstopper they called "flawless" and won a Hollywood Handshake in the signature - going on to be named star baker.

Read more: All the Bake Off winners and where they are now

The client relationship manager from London has had the most mixed competition of the four semi-finalists, but was brought to tears by her successes this week.

She had all but written off her chances of making it through the semi-final, so was shocked and delighted to get star baker.

As the contestant to have won the most star baker titles this series, 56-year-old Jurgen has always been the one to beat, so his elimination in the semi-final was a huge shock.

The German physicist who lives in Brighton has created cakes that have amazed his competition and has seemed unflappable throughout - although he worried in the semi-final when he was the only baker not to get a Hollywood Handshake in the signature bake.

Jurgen said: "There were three handshakes in the tent, I didn't get one, the judges were divided. Bottom line, I'm in trouble now."

He went on to win the technical, but the judges were underwhelmed by his showstopper, saying it looked a little boring.

The Great British Bake Off final will air on Tuesday, 23 November at 8pm on Channel 4.

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