SCOTTISH baker Norman Calder found himself cast adrift as he became the latest contestant to leave The Great British Bake Off.
The retired Merchant Navy radio operator struggled with his presentation and served raw pastry for one of his dishes, prompting judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood to ask him to leave the tent.
Viewers of the BBC1 show had already seen him looking vulnerable, but he clung on when Iain Watters rashly threw his melted baked Alaska in the bin in last week’s edition.
The programme was mired in controversy last week when it emerged that another contestant, Diana Beard, had taken Watters’s ice cream out of the fridge. Viewers were informed that she has since left the programme as a result of ill health.
During the tarts and pies-themed programme, Norman served up a tarte au citron which was let down by its presentation and a dish of pears in puff pastry, but the casing was uncooked in places.
His showstopper Norman’s Pieffel Tower had fruit weeping out, the lavender in his meringue was overpowering and the pastry was thought to be too crumbly.
Norman, 66, who had served a number of traditional no-nonsense dishes during the series, said: “I really didn’t want to go as I was enjoying it so much, but admittedly I did mess up a wee bit, so I had to go although I enjoyed the whole experience. Everyone is under the same rules and the same pressure.”
He went on: “I have been called Storming Norman, and it has been fun to be recognised like that - I didn’t even mind the judges saying my bakes were plain and simple.
“I didn’t go into Bake Off for the fame, I just wanted to have a bit of excitement in my life. I have been retired for three years, and for me it was a rejuvenating experience and about meeting new people. What I liked most about it was there were 11 people in there who hadn’t heard my jokes before.”
Scot Norman, from Portknockie, Moray, said he had enjoyed being recognised and stopped in his local supermarket for photographs.
He added: “The best bit of The Great British Bake Off for me was the very first day I walked into the tent. That alone was very exciting. Then I managed to finish the showstopper and Mary tasted my 36 miniature cakes. That was the most memorable part for me - that Mary Berry liked my bakes.”