Genoise Sponge: A very light and airy kind of sponge cake, used very widely by GBBO contestants as a base for everything from tiramisu to Jaffa cakes (essentially mini chocolate-covered biscuits). You also sound very fancy and proper when you say it, like you went to boarding school growing up and then finished your education at Oxford.
Hot water crust: An old-school pastry made by boiling water and fat (usually lard) in a pan, then adding flour. It’s traditionally used for elaborately decorated meat pies, as it’s hefty and sturdy, kind of like Paul Hollywood.
Pasty: No, not those adult only pasties. This version of a pasty is actually a savory pastry, usually filled with meat and/or vegetables. Beef and potatoes (aka, Cornish pasties) are the most traditional, but during signature challenges, contestants have stuffed their pasties with lamb and mint, spicy duck, and even potatoes and peas, samosa-style.
Proofing (or proving): This is the exact same thing as rising, the stage of making a bread when you let the dough grow in size under moist, warm conditions to give the final product more volume and an airier texture. Usually the most stressful portion of bread week.
Proofing drawer (or proving drawer): Those little bins underneath the ovens on the show where contestants stash their dough to rise. These drawers help speed up the proofing process, but they don’t reduce contestants’ worries over whether their bread will bloom up nicely or fall flat.
Pudding: Not the brown or off-white colored liquid you eat out of disposable cups, but rather a term for dessert or cake, but never a pastry. GBBO contestants have been asked to make many a type of pudding, from the classic sticky toffee variety to a self-saucing one (also known as a molten lava cake). Savory puddings do exist, but these have qualifying adjectives, like Yorkshire pudding, or black pudding. On the show, you’ll often hear the word abbreviated to “pud.”
Scrummy: A foundational descriptor during GBBO judging, scrummy (short for scrumptious) is the ultimate compliment from Mary Berry. If you’re on the receiving end of the s-word, you’re likely in the running for Star Baker.