The Final Four: The Next Great Baker Re-cap


 We're down to the Final Four on The Next Great Baker, and here's how it looks:



Paul: What he lacks in personality, he makes up for with hard wore. Week after week, he's managed to stay in the game despite not always producing the best work. ODDS: 20 to 1.

Gretel-Ann: Gretel Ann's sheer tenacity and determination could take her all the way. ODDS: 12 to 1.

Jen: You can't deny Jen's good -- she's the perfect combo of skilled and creative. Nobody seems to have beef with her, which means she could easily fly under the radar and defeat them all. ODDS: 4 to 1

Ashley: Focused, and ambitious, Ashley applies the same dedication to her baking work that she did when she was a successful model. Her work is just as strong as her personality. ODDS: 2 to 1.

But first there's the Baker's Challenge. The contestants are charged with icing a cake, putting a border on it, and putting a rose on it. A simple challenge, except they've got to do it blindfolded. And of course Buddy has to prove that he can do the challenge perfectly, so the contestants can feel extra bad when their cakes don't work out.

Jen and Ashley actually do a passable job, but Gretel-Ann and Paul? As Paul might say, "fuggetaboutit."

Ashley wins the $3,000 gift certificate to Bakery Craft.  "She's like a cyborg from outer space who's come to take over the baking world," says Paul.

For the main challenge, they're tasked with making tribute cakes for their moms. Paul is thankfully teamed up with Jen (and not Ashley) and Gretel-Ann and Ashley immediately get to work.

Because it's Buddy, there's a twist. But for once, it's a nice one -- the contestant's moms are invited in to help on the cakes for two hours. Gretel-Ann and her mom share a haircut, as do Ashley and her mom. Thankfully, for Paul's mom, they don't have a similar hairstyle.

After the moms leave, the contestants get back to work. Paul compliments Jen's piping, saying "she's just nasty when it comes to that." 

Both cakes turn out beautifully, and the guest judges -- Buddy's mom and wife -- are divided about who has the top cake. Anyone could go home. Do you want to find out who's moving on to the finale and who took the box ride truck home? Click through for major SPOILERS!

After a heartfelt plea, Buddy decided to send Paul home.

Who do you think will take it all the way?

--Julie Gerstein

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