The Great British Bake Off has come under fire for a Japan-themed episode in which contestants used Chinese and Indian ingredients, as well as panda decorations. Others appeared to make a Chinese pork bun, while one baker designed her buns to look like a US-style cheeseburger with fries. Viewers were left confused by the choice of flavours, which seemed to go against the theme of the episode, and feed into racist stereotypes. Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? Start your Independent Premium subscription today. Baker Hermine also styled her buns into pandas, which are native to China.
‘Ignorant and racist’: The Great British Bake Off slammed for ‘Japanese week’
Great British Bake Off Japan Week Catchup | GBBO Episode 6 - Eater London
Great British Bake Off viewers have criticised the show following a culturally insensitive approach to Japanese Week. Tuesday's episode October 27 saw the remaining bakers taking on three challenges that were supposed to fit the theme of Japan. The Signature Bake required the contestants to make a batch of eight steamed buns — but as numerous people on social media pointed out, bao steamed buns actually originated in China. Completely ignored the Chinese roots of Japanese steamed buns and the technical is French but they deem it Japanese because they threw matcha in it. Some bakers also used Chinese ingredients for the filling of their buns , as the show was called out for perpetuating the harmful stereotype that all East Asians are the same. Meanwhile, many questioned the inclusion of the matcha crepe cake for the Technical Challenge.
Uncle Roger, whose real name is Nigel Ng, is known for taking down western cooking videos that attempt to make Asian food. Recently, the Malaysian comedian took aim at English chef Jamie Oliver for his method of making fried rice. Contestants in the show were tasked to make Japanese food but instead made buns with Chinese, Indian and American fillings. Many Asian cultures have bun as food, because bun is our version of sandwich.