Great British Bake Off fans got heated after judge Paul Hollywood said rainbow bagels ‘represent the NHS’ on last night’s episode.
The bakers were tasked with a colourful technical challenge on Bread Week as Paul and Prue Leith asked them to make six rainbow bagels.
Although he did acknowledge the rainbow flag used by the LGBTQ community and regularly seen at Pride, he felt the current health crisis had given it a new meaning.
When Prue asked why he had set the challenge, Paul explained: ‘I think bagels are a great challenge when you’re making bread. You’ve gotta boil them which is unusual.
‘I think the rainbow colours for me, although it orginated over in the States, I think it represents the NHS. It does now certainly.’
However viewers weren’t having it and shared their mock outrage on Twitter.
‘NHS bagel? Why can’t it be a Pride bagel? A gay bagel? A gaygel,’ read one comment.
One stunned viewer tweeted: ‘“Although it originated in the US I think the rainbow represents the NHS” The level of ignorance… the appropriation… I…’
Another Bake Off fan posted: ‘NHS = rainbows. I don’t think’ while one noted: ‘You just know they called it “NHS bread” to get the gays talking. Damn, we’re so predictable.’
The episode saw Paul hand out his second ‘Hollywood Handshake’ of the series to baker Hermine for her soda bread while Marc – who accidentally sprayed himself in buttermilk in the episode – was named star baker.
Meanwhile Rowan’s time in the competition came to an end.
He said after his exit: ‘I feel very content really. I’ve had a wonderful time, it is exhausting but very rewarding.’
Next week is Chocolate Week with a celebration Showstopper that will test the bakers’ skills with white chocolate.
The Great British Bake Off airs Tuesdays at 8pm on Channel 4.
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