Are you Northern Ireland's answer to Mary Berry?

Fancy yourself as NI's Mary Berry?
Fancy yourself as NI's Mary Berry?

Fancy yourself as Northern Ireland's answer to Mary Berry? Well, now is your chance to have your cake and eat it.

Belfast shopping centre Victoria Square, along with the Women’s Institute and cook Jenny Bristow, are on the hunt to find the province's best Victoria ‘Square’ Sandwich baker.

Michelle Greeves, Victoria Square Centre Manager, Elizabeth Warden, Federation Chairman, Womens Institute and Jenny Bristow

Michelle Greeves, Victoria Square Centre Manager, Elizabeth Warden, Federation Chairman, Womens Institute and Jenny Bristow

One representative from each of the 21 Area Groups of Women’s Institutes are invited to submit their very best four-egg sponge to be judged by Victoria Square Centre Manager, Michelle Greeves and cook Jenny Bristow, at the semi-final on January 28 at WI Headquarters in Belfast.

Six finalists from across the province will be selected to compete in the grand final at Victoria Square on March 4 when they will be tasked to bake their own unique Victoria Sandwich against the clock and in front of a live audience.

“Baking appeals to all ages, especially since the growth in popularity of baking TV shows, so this will be a lovely fun family event," said Michelle. "There are many great home bakers here and I’m sure many of us can recall our favourite treats baked by family or friends at special occasions. The WI members in particular are known for their baking and cooking talent so we’re really excited to get together to have some fun with our own bake-off with a Victoria Square twist.”

Finalists will race against the clock in front of a live audience to bake their best ‘Victoria Square Sandwich’ and the showstopper will literally be the icing on the cake when contestants will be challenged to delightfully decorate their sandwich for Spring.

Judge Jenny Bristow added: “I will be looking for all the traditional qualities you’d expect from a sponge – light and tender – but there needs to be a good balance of flavour with the sponge and jam and of course, no soggy bottoms allowed!”

The winner will be crowned the coveted title of Victoria Square Star Baker and will take home a bundle of premium baking equipment and treats courtesy of House of Fraser, as well as a place at the ‘Jenny Bristow Cookery School’ experience. The runners-up will receive a £50 Victoria Square gift card to spend in a choice of 70 stores, cafés and restaurants under the dome at Northern Ireland’s leading retail destination.