Rolling pins at the ready for the 'Bake Off' finale

After weeks of kneading, icing and collapsing gingerbread houses, the nation must have a winner. The Great British Bake Off champion will be named tonight after a BBC2 series that has proved a surprise ratings hit.

GBBO is not about gender. It's a kitchen-sink drama

IMHO: Not really. No one in their right mind makes their own puff pastry, let alone their own rococo gingerbread birdcage

Five-minute memoir: Elson Quick reminisces on a trip to Thailand

I'm hungry. The day clears its throat. A cockerel's dusty bluster, a furry rip of motorised scooter exhaust, and from some high weed-throttled loudspeaker, the nasal megaphone of traditional song, impossibly nostalgic for a life I don't know.

Red mullet en papillote

Red mullet en papillote

Serves 4

To vary pizza bianco, add freshly chopped oregano, rosemary or even shavings of truffle

Pizza bianco

Makes 2 pizzas

Celeriac and Lancashire cheese pithivier

Celeriac and Lancashire cheese pithivier

Serves 6-8

Plum and fig pudding with honey yoghurt cream

Serves 6-8

Rump of salt marsh lamb with samphire patties

Rump of salt marsh lamb with samphire patties

Serves 4

Paul Hollywood: Hero or Villain?

No matter how distraught King Alfred was at burning his cakes, he will have been grateful not to have had Paul Hollywood standing over him, stifling a laugh and commenting helpfully: "Do you think you can rescue those with icing?"

Richard Bertinet, the author of four books, runs a cookery school, and a bakery: 'Bread feeds the soul and the body. I could be happy living on bread and water'

My Life In Food: Richard Bertinet

'Bread feeds the soul and the body. I could be happy living on bread and water'

St Ives in the sun: But Cornwall misses out on £2m every year through discounts to owners of second homes

Cornwall bans use of 'England' in tourism promotional material

Its reputation as a pocket of nationalist rebellion has long formed part of Cornish folklore.

Paul Hollywood: 'If I'm really tired, I hunt down a doughnut for the sugar rush'

My earliest food memory… My nan's mince and potatoes: it was the first time I went back for seconds of anything. Her cooking was always basic but very tasty. Dad was a baker, and we lived above the bakery, so I was always popping down to have an apple pie, or a doughnut or a custard or gypsy tart: I had a very sweet tooth, and I think that that was what got me into doing what I do now.

Tomato and basil tarts and courgette and feta tarts

Tomato and basil tarts

Serves about 10

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

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Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
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Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
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David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

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Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

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The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
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You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
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The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

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The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
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The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003