#NadiyaBakes: “To think I was a contestant and now I’m a judge” – Nadiya talks Junior Bake Off!

  • We earn a commission for products purchased through some links in this article.
  • In the latest post of her exclusive #NadiyaBakes blog, Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain talks about the very special transition from contestant to judge, as she take up her role on Junior Bake Off, as well as revealing where she’s just been on holiday and how she’s coped without her kitchen…

    This month I have come to the realisation of how much I depend on my kitchen to be me. I didn’t think a functional room of a family home could define someone. Imagine if someone proclaimed that ‘I can’t do without my bathroom, I am lost without it’. Sounds silly right? Well I am about to say it: ‘my kitchen defines so many parts of me’. Life has finally wedged itself right between me and my beloved kitchen. Having just moved into our new home I hadn’t really moved to first name basis with the kitchen yet. But it was mine and I was raring to get started – ready to cook (and bake) up a storm.

    “My kitchen defines so many parts of me”

    We lived in our new house for 4 days before we made a mad dash to Disney land Florida, leaving a barrage of unopened boxes and empty cupboards in our wake. Still no cooking and thanks to an all inclusive stay with Mickey and his pals, there was no cooking or baking in America either. What we did have was enormous portions, late nights and more fun than we knew what to do with. However, as the end of the holiday drew near I was ready to get home and get my apron on.

    Straight off a flight from Florida we landed back in drizzly London. As if 3 weeks of being apart from my kitchen wasn’t enough we had to endure a 9 hour flight with a plane meal that nearly tipped me over the edge. I just want to cook, bake, slice something – maybe even just make a piece of toast.

    This wish turned out to be fruitless. Straight from the airport I was whisked into a car and taken to film as the new judge for Junior Bake off. It was by far some of the most fun I have ever had. Surreal to say the least. To think once I was contestant and today I am a judge. I did spend 3 weeks filming and pinching myself, but still no cooking.

    “Junior Bake off was by far some of the most fun I have ever had”

    As soon as I had finished filming I had to make a mad dash from top to tail of the UK and perform at a few festivals. It seemed like the more I wanted to be in my kitchen the further away it got.

    Exhausted beyond belief it always uplifts me to meet beautifully positive people who line up in the rain to say hello, take a selfie or have a book signed. Somehow my exhaustion seems to disappear. I finally made it home 4 weeks later and there was my lovely kitchen ready to be cooked in and baked in.

    “It sounds silly but my kitchen defines me”

    It sounds silly but my kitchen defines me, because it’s the place I love to cook and bake in for sustenance, it’s the place where I can create for the sake of love, it’s the place in our home that keeps us together. So here’s to being home. Here’s to cooking, baking, creating and being happy.