original mason cash mixing bowl

'The Great British Baking Show' Contestants All Use This Iconic Kitchen Staple

It's been a British standby since 1901.
By Nina Huang
October 30, 2020
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Most critics who praise The Great British Baking Show (or Bake Off, as it's affectionately known in the U.K.) focus on the heartwarming camaraderie between its contestants, the off-piste yet upbeat energy from its hosts Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas, as well as the piercing blue eyes that either make or break a contestant's nerves from judge Paul Hollywood. But Bake Off's most important legacy might be inspiring a new generation of bakers. Take note of current series contestant Peter, a 20-year-old student who started watching the show at the age of 10 and has been inspired to step in front of the oven (and Bake Off cameras) himself ever since. 

While Bake Off has contributed to a surge of interest in baking, and fans can certainly try out recipes from the series at home, it's harder to nail down the exact gadgets, utensils, and bakeware used in the series. The Bake Off production team tapes over logos on ingredients used on the show and smart camera maneuvers mean that the brand names on the appliances are never shown. However, there is one item so iconic that eagle-eyed viewers spotted it right away. 

Anyone who has watched even just one episode of Bake Off can surely recognize Mason Cash's classic ceramic mixing bowls in the tent. These gorgeous, pastel-hued staples often take center stage when the cameras zoom into whatever mixture the contestants are working on, and for good reason—they've held a special place in British kitchens for over a century. First manufactured in 1901, Mason Cash mixing bowls are made of chip-resistant material that's durable enough to last for years. They come in a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, and there are even options made specifically for big stand mixers.

Mason Cash mixing bowl variety
Credit: Courtesy of Food52

To buy: Mason Cash Cane Mixing Bowls, prices vary according to size; amazon.com, wayfair.com, or food52.com

Bake Off isn't the only TV show where you can spot Mason Cash bowls either. Ex-judge Dame Mary Berry used it on Mary Berry Everyday to make her stunning salmon; Nigella Lawson mixed her At My Table ginger and walnut carrot cakes and sticky toffee pudding in the brand's colorful bowls; and Nadiya Hussain—famed Bake Off winner and now culinary icon in her own right—can be seen sprinkling ingredients for her cheesecake into one. The bowls were even on full display when Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles, Prince William, and Prince George gathered last Christmas to make four charity puddings, with Prince George stirring the mixture in a Mason Cash bowl using a wooden spoon. 

These bowls are about as classically British as a cup of Yorkshire tea, a Victoria sponge cake, and a shepherd's pie. While they've remained elusive stateside, we've found them online at Amazon, Wayfair, and Food52. Now that the secret is out, they're bound to sell out soon—shop these iconic essentials that have been featured on every Bake Off episode for your next quarantine baking session

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