Prue Leith is rumoured to replace Mary Berry in Bake Off, but who is she?

Prue Leith is rumoured to replace Mary Berry in Bake Off, but who is she?

Prue Leith could be replacing Mary Berry

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

As The Great British Bake Off moves from the BBC to Channel 4, millions have been wondering who could take the place of much-loved Mary Berry, the anchorwoman of the hugely popular show.

Now it seems we may have the answer, with sources claiming another BBC cooking show personality, Prue Leith, is the chosen one.

Although it is not confirmed, a source told The Sun that Leith has been recruited, with bosses apparently seeing her as a as a "like for like" replacement for Berry.

Just four months ago Leith told The Telegraph she had no intention of taking up the judge's spot in Bake Off. Yet this morning (February 14) a representative for Leith confirmed she has been part of a selection process for the show.

But could she really capture the heart's of the nation? Or will we soon lose interest and end up watching re-runs of old shows, pining for Berry's magic?

Well, Leith has certainly got some experience, having spent a decade as a judge on the BBC's Great British Menu (although the contestants on that show are professionals, so it may be that she needs to change her judging style slightly for this new role).

Not only has she got judging experience, but she has an impressive culinary CV of her own. She learnt to cook at the Cordon Bleu in London, after being inspired by a woman she worked for as an au pair in France. 

After working as a caterer, she became well known for her cooking school, Leith’s School of Food and Wine, which she founded in 1975. The presenter also opened her own Michelin-starred restaurant, named Leith's. Like Berry she is a CBE, having picked up the prestigious award in 2012.

With this backstory, suffice to say Paul Hollywood won't be looking down his nose at his new co-star.

Leith has also written a series of best-selling cookbooks, such as Leith's How to Cook and Leith's Cookery Bible, as well as working as a cookery correspondent for several newspapers. In that case, she's certainly well-rehearsed in sharing her baking knowledge. 

Despite having more than 50 years' experience in the business, she has maintained her love of cooking. On her website she says: "I love cooking, the doing of it... I still like experimenting and trying stuff and eating things I’ve never eaten before."

This is a good sign for Bake Off, as viewers must be able to see the passion behind the judge.

Plus, Leith is not only clever in the kitchen, the restaurateur has also written several novels. Her latest is a love story entitled The Prodigal Daughter.

With a wide range of skills then, it seems Leith could be a great fit for the show. But only time will tell whether she'll match up to Berry's high Bake Off standards.