Neil rises to the occasion on bread week on the Great Irish Bake Off

Neil rises to the occasion on bread week on the Great Irish Bake Off

Last week was bread week on the Great Irish Bake Off and’s Neil Reid impressed enough to see himself through to another week of the TV3 show.

Below are his thoughts on the week’s events.

Neil's loaf

Neil’s loaf

Bread week was a week I wasn’t particularly looking forward to in the tent if I’m honest. We all have an element of baking we don’t do a lot of and for me that was bread. Our challenge was to create a Picnic Loaf for the judges. I had to Google it too. Basically it’s a loaf where you either bake the fillings within the bread or you bake the bread, hollow it out and fill it. The trick is to be able to take a slice and all the filling stay within the slice. I don’t have a massively exploratory palette for savoury things so I had to think of what I enjoy most and that’s breakfast, a good Irish Fry Up or a breakfast roll. So I was baking a breakfast in a loaf.

It was a little tribute to my days playing football with Drumcondra AFC where I was known for eating the occasional breakfast roll before a game. The late and great Tim Grace gave me endless stick over this but always in good fun.

My recipe consists of a cob loaf filled with bacon, sausage, an omelette and fried baby potatoes. I also added a salsa to go with it as a bit of fun and to show that I was thinking about my presentation. Between my Stollen Bread and my Breakfast Loaf it was a good week for me and I cannot wait for Chocolate week next week.

Congrats to Sandra on being this week’s Star baker and we were all so disappointed to see Natasha go. She has a great future in baking.

If you missed the show you can check it out on the 3Player. Tune in on Sunday evenings at 9pm on TV3 to see how Neil gets on each week.


“Breakfast Loaf”

500gr Strong White flower

40gr Soft butter

12gr fast dried yeast

300ml luke warm water

Olive oil


600gr Sausage Meet

1lb bacon medallions

6 eggs

30ml Milk

Salt, Pepper

500gr baby potatoes

A tbsp Dried rosemary

50gr White Chedder


  • Add Butter to flour in bowl
  • Add Salt and yeast (Opposite sides) and mix with spoon
  • Add half water and combine by hand, continue to add water until it comes away from sides and is soft
  • Use mixture to clean bowl
  • Oil surface (1 tsp)
  • Kneed dough for 5-10 mins until smooth and stretchy
  • Put back in bowl and cover with oiled cling film to prove for 1 Hr
  • Take out and knock the air out it
  • Shape into long rectangle
  • Layer cooked fillings in and cover in bread
  • Let Proof again for 25 mins – Dust lightly with some flour
  • Bake at 220deg with steam bath


I didn’t add salt to my bread as the salt from the bacon was more than enough to season it.

Also I did soak my bacon in water to remove some of the salt from it



6 ripe tomatoes

1 large bunch of fresh coriander

1 onion

1 fresh jalapeño

1 large clove of garlic

1-2 limes, juice from

50 ml extra virgin olive oil

sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

2 tbsp chilli flakes



  • Finely chop the tomatoes and coriander and place in a bowl.
  • Peel and dice onion
  • De-seed and chop Jalepeno
  • Finely grate garlic
  • Add juice of lime
  • Mix and season
  • Put into piping bag and tighten as tight as possible
  • Leave until last second to remove from bag

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