Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK 12 new dolls waltzed into the Werk Room and while their Season 1 sisters – led by The Vivienne – were icons, they walked so these calls could run. Because damn, this season was perfect from start to finish. We lost star Joe Black first before the sweetest frontline worker of all time Cherry Valentine was felled. The dolls were then gagged by ASOS loving Asttina followed her out the door with a win to her name before Ginny straight up quit the show and exited on her own terms.
Then the world happened and that little ol’ virus that could came a knockin’ at the studio doors with filming shut down for seven months.
When things kicked back off, Sister had a new face while Tia kept her JT style hair for continuity. Sadly, Veronica caught COVID and was unable to return to the show, leading to Joe making a triumphant return for another try. Sadly she became the first boot again before Tia and Sister followed her out the door. Despite having two wins to her name, A’Whora was felled by a bleep riddle comedy show leaving Ellie, Tayce, Bimini and Lawrence to battle for the crown.
Well, the latter three as Ellie was felled ahead of the final lip sync.
While Tayce dominated the lip sync and Bimini dominated the latter half of the competition, it was the all-rounder Lawrence that joined the UK winners circle. And well, it is what she deserves. While Bimini overtook her in the later stages of the competition, Lawrence was consistently in the top and you know she is going to go on to have a long, successful career given she is so damn charming and funny. As such, I was very proud to toast her success with a piping hot bowl of Lawrence Colchannon.
How do you make mashed potatoes even better? Pack it full of flavour and cover it in brown butter, of course! Rich and hearty, this colcannon is the perfect accompaniment for any dish and will have you questioning why you haven’t slathered brown butter over your mash before.
Lawrence Colchannon Serves: 6-8.
Ingredients 1kg washed potatoes 200g kale, stripped from stems and roughly chopped 1 cup milk 2 tsp kosher salt 1 tsp pepper 150g unsalted butter 4 spring onions, sliced
Method Pop the potatoes into a large pot of salted water and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until tender. Add the stripped kale to the pan and cook for a further five minutes before draining everything. Return to the pan and place over the off burner to dry out all the excess liquid.
Aggressively mash the potatoes and kale until semi-smooth before stirring through the milk, salt and pepper and stirring to combine. Place over the lowest heat possible and stir frequently to avoid catching.
Place a small saucepan over a medium heat and slowly melt the butter before cooking until golden brown and starting to get brown bits catching on the bottom. Add in the spring onions, cook for a further minute and remove from the heat. Add half to the potato mixture and stir to combine.
To serve, pour the potato into a dish, whipping with a spatula to form peaks and valleys across the surface. Then drizzle with the rest of the brown butter and devour, like a true queen.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK the top four slayed their final challenge before Ru decided to add one final bit of messiness to the proceedings and eliminated Ellie without a shot at the crown. With that, the newly minted top three took their places on the mainstage and turned out another epic performance as they lip synced for the crown. Despite Tayce obviously slaying from start to finish, however, that was as far as her superior lip syncing skills would take her as she finished as co-runner-up of the season.
Co-runner-up with Bimini, proving to be the gaggiest gag of all the seasons as Lawrence took the crown home to Scotland instead.
By the time Bimini found me backstage, following the sound of my heartbroken tears, I clung to her for dear life, disappointed that her epic run wasn’t rewarded with a crown. She tried to sooth me with assurances that proving herself was more than enough of a win and reminded me I should be as happy for Lawrence as she was.
And well, I am – particularly given you could argue that COVID really killed her momentum and things could have played out if they didn’t have a seven month pause – though that doesn’t take away from the fact Bimini was iconic. And well, if she doesn’t win the first UK All Stars, I will riot.
I have been a friend for Bims for close to a decade now, meeting while studying journalism together so it was so wonderful to see her shine and grow throughout the competition. And while it isn’t the crown that she deserves, a piping hot bowl of Biminestrone Bon Boulash is a close second.
Warming and hearty, this play on Nigella’s green minestrone is delicious. And more importantly, easily converted into a vegan option for our vegan queen. Sweet and fresh, it is the perfect trans-seasonal freshness to get you ready for soup season.
Biminestrone Bon Boulash Serves: 8.
Ingredients 3 tbsp garlic oil 1 tsp dried thyme 2 leeks, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced 1 potato, diced 1 celery stalk, finely sliced 3 cups frozen peas a handful of green beans, trimmed and cut into short lengths 2 zucchinis, half-peeled and diced 1L vegetable stock salt and pepper, to taste a handful fresh basil leaves 2 tbsp parmesan cheese, grated (or a vegan substitute) 800g canned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed 500g spinach and ricotta tortellini (or a vegan substitute)
Method Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat and cook the thyme until fragrant. Add the leek, potato and celery, and sweat for about five minutes. Stir in the peas and beans, followed by the zucchini and stock. Pop on a lid, bring to the boil and leave to simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the potato is cooked through. Season to taste.
Take out about 2 cups of vegetables and a little liquid and blitz in a blender with the basil and parmesan – being careful to avoid the steam blowing off the lid – and return to the pan alongside the beans and tortellini. Bring back to the boil and cook until the pasta is tender.
Remove from the heat and leave to rest for ten minutes or so before devouring, while manifesting a crown in Bimini’s near future.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK the top four faced their biggest, ultimate challenge – writing and recording verses, learning choreography, lunching and performing live on the mainstage – and while they all slayed from start to finish, Ru felt only three had earnt the right to lip sync for the crown and viciously cut Ellie, leaving Lawrence, Bimini and Tayce to battle it out.
And hot damn did they turn it!
They took their places on the mainstage and as soon as my lover turned enemy turned frenemy to potentially back to lover’s Elton’sI’m Still Standing kicked off, they were all in their element. Lawrence came out swinging with camp, Tayce continued her glorious finale performance and Bimini hit every syllable and served all of the emotions. And then straight up squatted into front kicks like a cossack dancer, before splitting and flipping everywhere.
But sadly, only one of them could take the crown and with only one win to her name, it wasn’t the iconic Tayce. Thankfully though, we had her the entire season and there was not even one moment where she wasn’t charming and entertaining and that is all that really matters.
As she exited to the Werk Room for a final time, I pulled her in for a massive hug and thanked her for gifting the world with her presence. And just having the nerve, the gall, the cheek and the gumption to be that much of an epic vibe. Kinda like Drag Race’s answer to Shonee, TBH.
Given she is a woman that knows what she likes, I scraped my original plans – following in zaddy John Eastoe’s footsteps – and whipped her up a delicious Potayce Noodle Sandwich.
While I had never heard of this iconic confection before watching the dolls COVID-break special, it instantly became one of my faves. Soft noodles, softer bread and gooey butter and cheese – which I introduced to Tayce – work perfectly to cheer you up, feed your soul and have you living your best life.
Potayce Noodle Sandwich Serves: 1.
Ingredients 1 pot of pot noodles, any flavour your heart desires 1 tbsp butter, let’s go with the saltiest you can find 2 slices of the whitest, fibreless bread you can find 2 tbsp cheddar cheese, grated
Method Cook the pot noodles as per their instructions before draining completely. Butter the bread, sprinkle it with some cheese and dump in the noodles.
Then close the sandwich and smash. And then, repeat because this is SO good.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK the top four were cast in the iconic new soap Beastenders. And despite many a wobbly bit during the shoot, everyone slayed. Of course that didn’t stop Ellie and Lawrence from fighting with each other, given they are giving off big sibling energy. When it came to judging, Tayce was read for being too sexy on the runway, while Ellie didn’t take comedy far enough. Shocking nobody, Bimini won her fourth badge, while Tayce and Ellie landed in the bottom, before Ru deemed them all too good, saving them and sending them through to the final as a foursome.
The top four returned to the Werk Room after the shocking non-elimination, giddy to officially be the final four. Tayce was particularly thrilled to survive lip syncing four times, while Ellie was proud to make it to the end despite no wins. Lawrence congratulated her on making it, despite the fact she tried to throw her under the bus on the runway. Ellie thanked Lawrence and admitted that she inspired her to start drag and as they all hugged, all appeared to be right in the world. We then got a supercut reminding us that Bimini fought her way to the top and grew the entire time, Ellie was proud of herself, Lawrence was desperate to be the first big girl winner and make Scotland proud.
And Tayce, she knows she is an icon and is simply ready to show it.
The next day the queens were still on cloud nine about making it to the end, with Bimini worried about her chiropractic bill post show given she is holding up FOUR badges now. Ru interrupted their kiki to announce that for their final challenge they would be writing their own verse for the rumix of A Little Bit of Love, then learn choreo and you guessed it, perform it live on stage. After lunching with Ru and Michelle on the mainstage, of course. After Ru departed the girls quickly started writing their verses, with Ellie going the shady route which made Lawrence very concerned, given it is completely against the ethos of the song. Thankfully she got Tayce and Bimini involved and they agreed the song needs to be positive and fierce. Read: cohesive. Speaking of Bimini, she was very confident – as she should be – given she can perform the house down and can turn a funny verse.
And Lawrence meanwhile was stuck in his head trying to write the lyrics.
Tayce was up first for her tic tac luncheon, charming her way through the interview and dropping the epic reveal that her dad is the guitarist of mother fuckin’ WHAM! No wonder she was always encouraged to rock a wig and turn a look like the iconic toddler she no longer was. Talk turned to what she has learnt in the competition, with Ru admitting that she has grown so dramatically from the start of filming, through lockdown to now. Ellie was up next, still gagging Ru with how young she is. Ellie admitted that she has always wanted to make life fun and not stick around in situations that suck. She then taught Ru and Michelle the Ellie Diamond 8-count choreo and the judges were both living. Not to mention the fact she played the game strategically in the comedy challenge with the judges telling her not to feel bad about it for a minute.
It was clear from the first moment Lawrence arrived that he is still Ru’s favourite, with Ru looking on proudly talking about her first time in drag and the overall transformation it has built in her. Lawrence admitted that she loves Scotland and wants to make them proud, particularly since Scottish people often end up being the brunt of jokes in movies. And ugh, then came the queen of my heart Bimini with her admitting that she surprised even herself with how well she has done in the competition. She admitted to struggling with self-doubt through the break, but built herself up and after re-starting filming on a very special day for her, she vowed to fight. Michelle spoke about seeing the moment in Snatch Game where she realised Bimini was in it to win it. Oh and then she spoiled how we met each other – at journalism school, but we’ll get to that later – and spoke about her history with depression and how she has overcome it through yoga, meditation and Oprah.
And again, give. Her. The. Damn. Crown.
The queens they met Jay Ruvell to work on the choreography with two beautiful dancers who had all the girls’ basements floodin’. Or drippin’ if you will. While Lawrence was shitting bricks, Tayce was living her absolute best life and served that rehearsal like it was the opening ceremony of the Olympics and she was Nikki Webster. Bimini obviously destroyed her solo moment, reminding me of Katya in the finale of All Stars 2. Ellie was confident in her own choreo, Lawrence warmed into her performance after a little bit of encouragement from Ellie and fuck, how can you not love all of them? Particularly Tayce who was DTD (dance, duh) and seriously was soaking in every moment and her joy was SO DAMN INFECTIOUS.
Coronation Day finally arrived – I mean, they had a damn seven month lockdown – with the girls excited to have made it, despite the fact Lawrence’s body was completely falling apart. Bimini asked the girls what they all thought of each other when they arrived, with Ellie intimidated by Tayce and Lawrence, and wanting Bimini to brush her wig. Tayce and Bimini praised Ellie’s level of polish for such a young girl, while Bimini was just thrilled that she has earnt people’s respect and they now believe she deserves the crown. Lawrence spoke about the power of having two Scottish queens in the finale and being able to prove that someone from a small town really can dominate. Tayce meanwhile was thrilled to show the judges what she does best, though pointed out Ellie’s final boy outfit pants are the lowest point in her mind.
When it came time for the dolls to perform, I was barely distracted by the sexy dancers because the top four came to slay. Bimini looked stunning, rapped like a professional and hit every moment of choreo. Ellie proved she can own the stage, spinning all over and mesmerising the judges. Even Lawrence’s fear of dance wasn’t visible, with a verse that fit with the song and a charming performance. And Tayce? You know she owned it, with sharp moves and on point lyrics and well, can we just do a four way crowning? Wait, no – the eliminated queens joined them all on stage for the final chorus and NOW I want a 12 way crowning. Because this cast was absolute fire.
On the Final Four Runway Eleganza Extravaganza, Bimini looked stunning in a slutty white bridal gown. I mean, her make-up was flawless. Ellie was gorgeous in a blush Glinda number, and even twirled her skirt out and squatted in the exact right moment. Lawrence went for Ru’s heart, dressed in purple Drag Race eleganza, complete with her badges used as earrings. And then Tayce slayed in a nude illusion, bird number with a face inspired by Naomi Campbell.
The judges praised Bimini for her epic run, going from bottom two week one to absolutely dominating the competition. They lived for her performance and thought her outfit was glorious. Ellie was praised for her stunning, polished looks and the heart she injects into every one of her looks. Everything Lawrence did, the judges completely ate up despite being a little behind on her steps. Not that they cared, given her personality will drive her career. Tayce FINALLY got the glowing praise she deserved for annihilating the verse and her performance. And looking stunning. Ru then gave her a special shoutout for destroying every lip sync she did in the competition, particularly for injecting herself into such vastly different songs.
Bimini then advised lil’ Tommy to not dye his hair and not let people’s bullshit diminish his shine. Ellie wanted to tell little Elliott that despite his relationship with his father, to not stop believing in finding your Oz. Lawrence encouraged himself to not close himself off because of the bullies, relax, laugh and believe in yourself. And then Tayce told a glorious story about taking a wig from her neighbour as a kid, skateboarding down the street and to enjoy the Maccas she had after it. And then gave a charming speech about not giving trolls time and to practise.
Ru asked the girls to detail why they should win, with Bimini focusing on wanting to be a beacon of queer weirdness and to make everyone she knows proud. Ellie spoke about her ability to do literally everything and never bottoming (except that one time, which she slayed). Lawrence gave a heartfelt speech about wanting to be an escape for people and given Ru beaming as she looked on proudly and the stirring music, I am starting to worry Bimini may not actually have this in the bag. Tayce spoke about never letting people get to her and that she will take that strength into the crown, perform her tits off all over the world and FINALLY put beans on toast with ketchup and butter on the map. Direct quote.
The top four returned backstage to meet the eliminated queens with us finally learning that Veronica survived her rat bite fever – though I knew that already – with Lawrence disappointed she couldn’t make the top with them but knowing she will slay Season 3. Cherry asked them to chat about the biggest gags of the season, with Ginny Lemon getting up and trying to walk out again. She explained she is an icon and has never been eliminated, so the move made sense to her. Bimini was gagged that Joe left twice, A’Whora was shocked by Ellie’s track record and Tia, bless, loved that they all bonded and got to become the best of friends.
The dolls returned to the mainstage where Ru announced that only three of them would be moving on to lip sync for the crown and as such, Ellie Diamond was eliminated in fourth place and sent to the back of stage to join her fellow eliminated sisters. As the crew reset for the final lip sync, I quickly pulled her aside and gave her a massive hug, praising for such a killer run. I mean, look back at everything she served and you see a cohesive point of view that was never anything less than perfection. And as such, she is destined for greatness. Even more greatness than an Ellie Diamonte Carlo, TBH.
While Monte Carlos aren’t my favourite of biscuits, my passion is creating copycats of any and all ones I can find on the shelf for the inevitable day when they are discontinued like my beloved coffee scrolls. And well, these are pretty delish. Coconutty and sweet, they are the perfect substitute for the real thing. Or maybe even better.
Ellie Diamonte Carlo Serves: 6-8.
Ingredients 250g butter, softened 100g muscovado sugar 1 egg 2 tsp vanilla extract 320g flour 1 ½ tsp baking powder 45g coconut 120g icing sugar 2 tsp milk ½ cup strawberry jam
Method Preheat the oven to 180C and line two baking sheets.
Using a stand mixer, cream 190g of the butter and the muscovado sugar on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Add in the egg and 1 ½ teaspoons of the vanilla extract and beat until just combined. Turn off the mixer and fold through the flour, baking powder and coconut before beating on low until just combined.
Roll out teaspoonfuls of the mixture into balls and pressed onto the lined trays. Transfer to the oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the trays for a couple of minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
While the biscuits get chill, cream the remaining butter and vanilla extract with the icing sugar and milk until soft and creamy.
To assemble, dollop a small glob of jam into the centre of half the biscuits before piping the buttercream in a ring around to enclose. Then sandwich with one of the naked biscuits.
Leave to set for about five minutes before devouring, triumphantly.
Previously on Drag Race UK the queens put on a comedy show about life’s grandest of comedie, love. In what is fast becoming tradition Bimini slayed, Lawrence got in her head, Tayce focused on sharing her gold another day and A’Whora was bleeped as quickly as a gay thot is banned from Instagram. More importantly, villain Ellie emerged, desperate to claim a win, scheduling the show to screw over Lawrence and A’Whora and while their rage ended up impacting Ellie’s performance too, it worked as A’Whora landed in the bottom opposite her bestie Tayce. Before Tayce, Tacye’d and eliminated her from the competition.
The queens ventured backstage in utter shock after A’Whora sashayed away with two badges against Tayce, who had only one to go with her three bottoms. Tayce on the flipside was not shocked, given she knows how to turn a lip sync and knows she will always slay. Ellie meanwhile was thrilled that A’Whora didn’t write a nasty message on the mirror to her about the set order. This led Lawrence to continue ranting about Ellie daring to play the game strategically, brutalising Ellie by pointing out that it wasn’t really worth it, given she never won that badge. Much to the delight of Tayce and horror of Bimini, as the two delights congratulated Ellie on having the guts to do it slash made sure she was ok.
Things were still tense the next day as Lawrence continued to shade Ellie’s track record, while Bimini was proud of herself for really cementing herself as a contender. Even more so than last week, when she cemented herself. Tayce meanwhile was more delighted by the fact that Lawrence could not let things with Ellie go, laughing that A’Whora would be over it as soon as she found herself under a cock. The only thing stopping Lawrence’s rage was the arrival of Ru for this week’s mini challenge requiring everyone to indeed love puppets. Yes, it is the puppet gloryhole shadefest. Ellie was first at the whole reaching deep to grab Tayce, Lawrence scored Ellie – oh god – Bimini scored Lawrence, leaving Tayce with the one and only Bimini Bon Boulash.
The dolls split up to drag up their puppets’ lives, before puppet Tayce arrived in her shocking dishrag dress talking a million miles an hour, sounding a bit like Baga Chipz but ultimately being entertaining as hell. Lawrence didn’t destroy Ellie as badly as I thought, being charming and sassy while reading her for filth. Once again Bimini was hilarious, charming and brutal and ugh, give her the crown now, please. I live. Oh and then Tayce was hilarious despite being nothing like Bimini. Once again – again – Bimini took out another well earned victory, this time earning her the right to cast the roles in this week’s Maxi Challenge, acting in the soap opera BeastEnders. Unlike Ellie however, Bimini opted not to be shady – probably because she was not really feeling threatened – and let the queens take the role that they liked after selecting herself the role of Scat Slater.
With that Bimini took Tayce aside to give her her breastplate for the challenge, allowing Ellie and Lawrence time to clear the air. And while Ellie was quick to apologise and explain why she did what she did, Lawrence really couldn’t let it go and Lawrence, you need to move on otherwise you’re only going to hurt yourself. Back over with the duo oozing with charm, Tayce was bouncing her tits and giddily planning not to blend the pale tits to match her skin tone to add more comedy.
Again, I love her.
Before we could see more from my loves, the girls were interrupted by the arrival of Eastenders’ own Natalie Cassidy to give the girls an acting masterclass via Skype. From screaming “Rickay” to working through their emotions saying “Bubbly’s in the fridge,” the take away was to add light and shade which is clearly something unique to British soaps, since Toadie’s mullet never screamed nuance to me. But I digress.
The queens arrived on set to shoot with Michelle Visage who encouraged the girls that this could be a classic … if they nail. Right out of the gate Bimini and Tayce slayed, while poor Lawrence couldn’t even get through the door on her first cue. She and Ellie then caused each other to spiral, missing line after line, even forgetting character names. Meanwhile my loves Bimini and Tayce sat on the sidelines thrilled that this is more likely to be the trainwreck of the scene rather than them. Michelle then stopped filming to give Lawrence a pep talk, reminding her to get out of her head ASAP, less she wants to bomb. Before immediately ending the shoot.
Elimination Day arrived with Ru inspired by Survivor and gifting the girls with letters from home. The top four gathered around to read their letters, with Ellie reading Bimini’s letter resulting in my love breaking down in tears about wanting to make their mum proud. Tayce’s letter was read to her by Bimini, with once again her mother lovingly backing her for the win and proving why parents need to back off their own bullshit and let kids feel their vibes because Tayce and Bimini are thriving because of it. Lawrence and Ellie’s mums were also delightful, loving and supportive, but you don’t need to hear me praise these four women in the same way. Just know that they are all amazing and have done a wonderful job with their children and fostered the environment to let them thrive.
On the Panto Dames runway Lawrence was a delightful sewing machine complete with stunning mint hair. Tayce meanwhile was a gorgeous Tinkerbell in blue, Bimini channelled full panto realness as a gaudy baby doll while Ellie was glorious as a shimmering queen of hearts. As is oft the case, the acting challenge fails proved to be a fake out as the girls all slayed the performance. Bimini was loud and trashy, Ellie was delightfully camp, Lawrence was a scrappy villain and Tayce was totally demented.
Ru praised all the girls for delivering a killer acting challenge before Michelle read Lawrence for getting in her head in the challenge and told her that she needed to trust in herself, because she delivered. That being said, they all lived for her panto inspired runway. Tayce was universally beloved in the acting challenge despite not leaning into the Karen of it all. That being said, Ru didn’t live for her runway given it was panto rather than panto dame. Bimini once again received universal praise for literally everything she did, from the arch of her back scrubbing the floor to her stunning, playful runway that was full panto dame realness. The judges loved everything about Ellie’s performance in the acting challenge and lived for her runway, before Michelle ominously praised everyone for delivering a killer performance and advised that this will well and truly be the most difficult challenge to judge both here and in the US.
Backstage the girls were excited to slay the challenge but slowly started to panic, realising the judges will be splitting hairs and as such, anyone could land in the bottom. Tayce in particular was terrified, given the judges didn’t love her runway given it was lacking the dame and she couldn’t fathom surviving a fourth lip sync ahead of the final. This led to her throwing Ellie and Lawrence under the bus for being under the bus, with Ellie shifting the blame solely on to Lawrence. Which led the Scots to once again start fighting over who was worse and to not start blaming each other.
Ultimately Bimini continued her victorious streak, taking out her record equalling fourth win of the season while Lawrence was deemed safe, leaving Tayce to once again face off, this time against Ellie. And oh did they battle from the very first note of Steps’ Last Thing on My Mind. Each queen hit every letter of every syllable, Tayce was duck walking, Ellie was cartwheeling into a death drop in a damn fucking hoop skirt. There were splits, flips, kicks, voguing and urgh, I was so grateful when Ru decreed that both queens shantay and stay, because THAT was a lip sync. Meaning all four queens would be progressing to the finale, which is convenient given Veronica finally received a negative COVID test and was able to join me to celebrate the season and her place in the pantheon.
As she walked into the Werk Room, I didn’t give her a traditional hug out of the utmost of caution against catching COVID – hey, I’m paralysed by fear, ok. I’ll get locked out of Australia – I did give her a really warm and loving smile, assuring her that while her momentum was stopped dead in its tracks, I am confident we will see her at the end of Season 3. Which proved to be enough to perk her up, as did the Veronica Green Curry.
Spicy and warming with an aggressive punch of freshness, there is honestly nothing better than a green curry. Which yeah, I say about most things, but I love food, ok?
Veronica Green Curry Serves: 4-6.
Ingredients 2 tbsp vegetable oil 1kg chicken thighs, diced 1 tbsp cornstarch 1 onion, sliced ½ cup green curry paste 1 cup broccoli florets 2 carrots, peeled and cut into coins 1 red capsicum, sliced 1 zucchini, seeded and sliced 2 cups coconut milk 1 ½ cups chicken stock 5 kaffir lime leaves, bruised 1 red chilli, sliced 2 tbsp fish sauce 1 tbsp muscovado sugar ¼ cup thai basil leaves jasmine rice and coriander, to serve
Method Pop the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Toss the chicken through the starch and add to the pan, and cook, stirring, until browned. Remove to a plate and set aside. Add the onions and cook for a couple of minutes, or until soft and sweet before adding the curry paste and cooking off for about five minutes.
Add the vegetables and stir until well coated before stirring in the coconut milk, stock, lime leaves, chilli and the cooked chicken. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until reduced. Remove from the heat and stir in the fish sauce, sugar and basil.
Serve immediately, piping hot before devouring. Galvanised and ready for a triumphant return.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK the queens turned themselves into superheroes, using all of the items we hoarded during lockdown. So basically, toilet paper, flour, yeast and eggs. After winning the reading challenge, Sister took hoarding to the next level and snatched literally everything from the loot before the other girls were even able to make a play for anything. Tayce drew inspiration from Baga with her steel wool scraps, while A’Whora destroyed and took out her second victory with one of the best design looks to ever grace the mainstage while Sister looks like she was living in the Mushroom Kingdom, on mushrooms. After Tayce landed in the bottom opposite her, the extra hoarding proved all for nought as Tayce once again assassinated the lip sync and sent home another Sister (Sister).
Backstage the girls were thrilled to make the top five, with Tayce particularly feeling giddy about felling another queen. To the point that she couldn’t even read her farewell message correctly. Lawrence meanwhile was nervous for Tayce, knowing that she can’t make it to the end on lip syncs alone. But given what we’ve seen, can she? The girls congratulated A’Whora on her second victory, before talk turned to Lawrence being on a bottoming streak and as such, A’Whora felt she needed to turn it up or get out of the way. Ellie decided to make things awkward and share that she felt they were going to be the top five after the COVID break, with A’Whora agreeing but telling her that she thinks she will be the next to go since she doesn’t have a badge.
Oh and Tayce admitted she has no idea what comes out of her mouth in confessionals which doesn’t add anything, but is important and adorable. And explains why I love her so.
The next day Ellie was still fired up about the girls underestimating her, vowing to step it up, play the game and prove herself in the competition. With Bimini doubling down and sharing that if she really doesn’t get a win soon, she may as well pack up and go home. A’Whora and Ellie’s arguing about the crux of the last challenge was interrupted by Ru arriving for this week’s mini challenge where the dolls would dress in boy drag to compete in the Masc 4 Masc Singer to “Hey, Kitty Girl” with the butchest topping. Ellie opted to take a risk, pivot and go with ‘80s androgynous realness, while A’Whora was flooding Ellie’s basement in her leather daddy look. Lawrence looked like Conchita Wurst’s brother, Tayce was a young Iggy Pop and Bimini looked like Sid Vicious and Kid Rock had a baby.
All of the dolls were totally demented and while Tayce was my personal favourite and A’Whora’s hilarious assurances of not knowing who Lady Gaga is, it was Ellie who took out a well deserved victory. And as such, she was given the power to decide the order in this week’s love themed comedy show maxi challenge. Oh and perform in front of my legendary friend, Dawn French.
The girls split up to work on their sets before, as she promised, Ellie opted to go in and set each and every queen up for failure. She put the weaker girls at the start and end, with A’Whora and Tayce taking out each slot while popping herself after A’Whora followed by Bimini and Lawrence before the aforementioned icon, Tayce. Lawrence immediately blew up, pointing out it was a terrible line-up and not only set up everyone else poorly, but that it will also screw herself over. Ellie stood up for herself though, pointing out it is a game and she needs to play it. Lawrence questioned whether she thinks she can actually score victory, with Ellie pointing out that following A’Whora is her best shot and she needs to take it. Much to Tayce’s delight.
Oh and then Ellie made the mistake of asking whether everyone is happy with their place, with Bimini assuring her that she will slay no matter where she performs while Lawrence cussed her out yet again. As Tayce delighted in the drama. Poor Ellie started to spiral, with Tayce and Bimini assuring her that playing the game isn’t wrong and to not feel bad about it, the latter pointing out again that good material is good no matter where it is placed. As Lawrence and A’Whora continued to simmer in the corner.
Speaking of A’Whora she was first to meet Alan for a tutorial and given most of her jokes were beeped, we only know it was filthy and not much else. Ellie justified placing everyone where she did, before delighting Alan with her dirty, deep voiced alter ego. Despite the set feeling a bit confusing. Bimini admitted that she has only performed stand-up twice, meaning she absolutely destroyed her rehearsal and left with not once piece of feedback. Lawrence thankfully didn’t let her anger get in her way, landing her punchlines with minimal direction required. And Tayce, bless, walked out and charmed her way into the rehearsal, having Alan in hysterics before even getting to material. Then Alan told her to focus on her love for beans on toast and well, I hope that is good advice.
Elimination Day rolled around with Lawrence and A’Whora admitting that sleeping on the order only made them angrier at Ellie, willing karma to strike her down. Lawrence desperately tried to get the tawdry details out of Tayce and A’Whora’s past, with them admitting that they are just friends. Tayce then spoke about her first ever date, which resulted in multiple STDs and made her lose her trust in men and brought down her self-esteem as she questioned why she hasn’t found someone to love her. This bonded Tayce and Lawrence, united by their insecurities and how drag gives them the confidence to take over the world. And ugh, again, I love them all so much.
As A’Whora took the stage, it was very clear that she didn’t opt to clean up her act, having the entire second half of her set bleeped, while the start was all about sex and had the judges chuckling and cringing in equal measure. I mean, even Tayce was blushing in her confessional. Ellie Diamond was up next and delighted the judges with her demon voice, though I still didn’t really get it. That being said, she was having fun, she was smutty and when she started to confuse the judges, I loved it. Despite it ending out of nowhere.
Bimini was up next and owned the stage from the very first moment, with smart jokes, killer punchlines, references to the judges careers and a great rhythm. Again, just give her the down crown – Bimini is a star. As Lawrence feared, following Bimini was the order equivalent of climbing Everest. But damn if she didn’t work hard to overcome it, having the judges in stitches from the very first moment. Until she took an extended time to get to her final punchline and lost the momentum. Rounding out the show, Tayce brought her usual charm to the performance, shading her competitors and delighting everyone. Before Meg Ryan-ing over her passion for beans. Sadly that was it, as she then went through a series of small lines which ended with it being a story for another time, with her potentially needing to bring one of those stories up to flesh out this time.
As always A’Whora slayed on the Stoned on the Runway runway, complete with stoned IV and stunning headpiece. Ellie meanwhile was a sexy, angel Dolly Parton before Bimini killed it once again as a sexy, punk, acne breakout. Lawrence was a pink, stoned alien, while Tayce was glorious as a shimmering, metallic warrior and ugh, I love it.
The judges lived for A’Whora’s outfit, though she was cautioned to maybe edit her material for the audience, given the show is on the BBC. That being said, Alan commended her on coming out and opening the show with such confidence. Ellie was read for not having rhythm in her set, though the judges lived for her snow queen runway. As is becoming a trend, the judges lived for everything Bimini did, praising her killer material, her intelligence and her chameleon, brave and stunning runways. Lawrence was praised for everything she did, however as feared, she clearly couldn’t overcome following Bimini despite comedy coming most naturally to her. Tayce was praised for surprising everyone with her comedy chops, despite the judges wanting to hear the end of some of her stories. And rightfully, they loved everything about her runway.
Backstage A’Whora’s rage exploded, furious that Ellie’s plan worked and she clearly landed in the bottom. Ellie once again tried to explain her position and admitted that she felt horrible about upsetting her and Lawrence. This obviously didn’t sit well with Lawrence, who tore into Ellie again because at the end of the day, she could have changed the order if it bothered her, but she didn’t. Once again Tayce was the only one seeing sense, reminding us that if you stumble, maybe you should have looked at the floor if you thought someone was trying to trip you. Ellie pointed out Ru was delighted by her choices, which made Lawrence even more incensed with Bimini rightly pointing out that the latter’s rage runs much deeper than the order.
Ultimately Lawrence was once again pipped at the post by Bimini, which in my opinion would have happened no matter where either of the performers placed in the line-up. Ellie meanwhile managed to save herself, simply by not being as filthy as A’Whora, who landed in the bottom with Tayce. Poor A’Whora was fighting back tears as Dusty Springfield’s You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me started up, but boy did she push through. The besties channelled their obvious emotions into the performances, hitting every lyric and selling the pain of the song as they fought for their places in the competition. Sadly for A’Whora, it wasn’t enough as Tayce well and truly took her place as the lip sync assassin of Drag Race UK, sending her best friend and roommate home.
A’Whora quickly found me by following the sound of my screaming tears all the way back into the Werk Room. While I wasn’t willing to jump in and pile more hate on Ellie – I live for the drama she caused, obviously – I did admit that she and Lawrence were hard done by, though I don’t really think their order in the performance would have changed things for either of them. A’Whora and I then started screaming at each other before I pulled her in for a hug, apologised and told her how heartbroken I was she didn’t make the finale. But as always, I reminded her that being robbed is always better than overstaying your welcome and as such, we both felt better. Though how can you not when you’ve got a big bowl of Pork A’Whoragu and Gnocchi in front of you?
This tweaked Laura Sharrad number – hey, we all watched a lot of Masterchef during lockdown, ok? – is near perfection. Light, fluffy gnocchi and the aggressively spiced ragu pair perfectly to create a heart, robust meal that soothes any and all pains. Particularly of the post-boot variety.
Pork A’Whoragu and Gnocchi Serves: 4.
Ingredients 1 onion, diced 2 sticks celery, diced 1 carrot, grated 4 garlic cloves, minced salt and pepper, to taste 650g pork mince 2 tsp ground cinnamon 2 tsp ground clove 1 cup red wine 1.6kg canned diced tomatoes 500g floury potatoes, peeled and chopped into a generous dice (larger pieces, less water absorbed) pinch freshly grated nutmeg 1 egg, beaten 110g plain flour, plus extra to dust shaved parmigiano, to serve
Method To make the ragu, heat a good lug of olive oil in a pan over medium heat and saute the onion, garlic, celery and carrot until soft and sweet. Season well. Stir in the pork, cinnamon and clove and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until cooked through. Add the wine and tomatoes, bring to the boil before reducing to low and simmering for a couple of hours, or until reduced and thick.
While the ragu is simmering, get to work on the gnocchi which despite my best instincts, I make from scratch from this given I feel it is necessary for the delicious ragu. As such, pop the potatoes in a pan of cold water – this is important – bring to the boil and cook until just tender. Drain the potatoes, return to the pan and cook over low heat, stirring, for a minute or two to get rid of all the excess moisture. Allow to cool completely.
Pass through a ricer or mash aggressively until smooth and your rage sorted. Add the nutmeg, eggs, a pinch of salt and flour and gently bring together with your hands until it has just come together and no more
Once it has come together, dust the bench and your hands with flour and take about a quarter of the dough, roll into a 1.5cm thick log. Slice into 2cm lengths, use the back of a fork to roll the gnocchi to give you the imprint – press the fork down into the length and pull towards you – and place on a floured baking sheet to rest. Repeat the process until they are all done and allow them to rest for an hour or so.
Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Cook the gnocchi in batches until they rise to the surface, remove with a slotted spoon to a colander and repeat until they’re done. Then fold through the ragu and serve with a generous heap of the parmigiano. And devour, regally.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK the top seven were delighted to be put through their paces in Snatch Game where Bimini absolutely destroyed the competition. Completely. While Lawrence and Tia tragically only destroyed the memory of both Miriam Margoles and Mel B, respectively. Obviously Bimini took out her second victory and firmly announced her arrival as a contender, while Tayce’s impersonation of THE Kath Day-Knight cemented her place in every Australian’s heart. As obvious as the tops were, the bottom was just as clear as Lawrence battled Tia for safety and given she already has three badges to her name, promptly sent sweet Tia home.
Backstage the queens toasted to Tia’s delightful performance, while throwing shade about her shoddy looks and penchant for bottoming. A’Whora was also shady about Lawrence getting lucky to face off against Tia before asking the girls to identify who should be the next to go. A’Whora started off saying that it should definitely be Sister, while Sister instead wanted Ellie to go for coasting throughout the competition. With Tayce, quickly taking the sole narrator role in stride without Tia, simply telling one of them to win the next challenge and that the other can go home, because without a badge neither of them stand a chance. The confessional queen is dead, long live the confessional queen.
Things were less tense the next day, with Bimini living for her RuPeter badge pasties and Lawrence sharing that she missed Veronica. Eliciting silence from the other girls. Which A’Whora broke by asking Sister who she plans to copy this week. Sadly before we found out, Ru arrived to put the girls to test with this season’s reading challenge. With 3D glasses, which is weird and I love it. Sister was surprisingly brutal in the best way possible, death threats notwithstanding. Ellie was very rehearsed, but was more mean than shady. Lawrence was a wee bit lighter and a lot more funny. Tayce was cute, A’Whora continued to destroy Sister for copying and joked about Tayce sitting on her face – swoon – before Bimini closed the show being hilarious, smart and as you know, I love her.
Stan even, like the streaming service. That really should be paying me, no?
Ru rightfully crowned Sister as the winner of the reading challenge before announcing that this week, the queens would be using lockdown loot to make their runways as they turn into lockdown superheroes. And for winning, Sister got an extra 15 seconds to snatch her materials from the pile of hoarded trash. And boy did she make the most of it, stealing literally everything, leaving the other queens with nary more than scraps. Needless to say it was absolute bedlam as they destroyed everything in sight, with A’Whora falling over and Bimini left with nothing more than a pillowcase. Realising that she had nothing, A’Whora decided to go full spy and ventured behind enemy lines to try and charm some items off Sister Sister’s table. Sister’s price was simply some compliments, which A’Whora couldn’t muster, opting to be delightfully shady instead as she tried her best to snatch something. Sadly, with no success.
As Lawrence panicked about working with random materials, Ellie was confident in her abilities given she has used unconventional items to make outfits before. Sister asked whether Lawrence felt she had it in her to beat A’Whora again, while A’Whora and Tayce threw themselves over their items and gossiped. Without making a start. A’Whora was nervous about Tayce in the challenge, but assured us that she wouldn’t be helping Tayce as much in this second design challenge. Bimini meanwhile was in the corner seeing if she could rock toilet paper or foam, when the answer is clearly both.
Thankfully Ru and my dear friend Raven arrived to distract from this potential disaster, with Raven gushing over Ellie’s abilities to beat her mug. A’Whora meanwhile was gushing over Raven before sharing that she will be making an outfit out of a garden hose. Bimini continued her charm campaign, complimenting Raven. She couldn’t, however, sell her concept of Nobbin’ Hood, defender of toilet paper and questioned whether it would be easier to just prep for the lip sync now rather than wait around. Sister meanwhile got make-up tips from Raven before laughing about stealing all of the items and vowing to get a win. And Tayce, oh lord Tayce – she was going to make a gown out of steel wool like Baga Chipz. And that makes me nervous, despite Tayce’s assurance that beauty is pain and she doesn’t care that she may cut up herself rather than the runway.
Oh and Lawrence was still recovering from bottoming and vowed to not repeat the experience. On the show, obviously.
After Ru and Raven departed, we learnt that Tayce had already had to call for medical and was reduced to making her outfit with a cartoon character glove. Meanwhile A’Whora was positively focused, while Lawrence was reeling after learning that her chosen fabric wouldn’t sew and instead had to start over.
Elimination Day arrived with A’Whora fixated on a design victory before leaving, while Tayce and Bimini caught up over the former’s outfit. Which was decidedly unfinished at the bottom. Lawrence meanwhile hadn’t actually tried on an outfit, nervous about finishing it while Ellie and Sister were straight up beating their faces. Lawrence and Sister bonded over learning to sew while young and admitted that their drag is inspired by their weird, outsider younger selves. Lawrence broke down over people just laughing at her when she entered a room as a kid, before sharing that one time, she got so overwhelmed by her bully, she fought back before gag of the season, she made him laugh and it led to her ascension as the funniest person in school.
Which is so relatable, because it is the easiest survival mechanism when you’re queer, hate sports and run a little thick. Speaking from experience.
Ru, Michelle and Graham were joined on the judging panel by Maya Jama with Tayce opening the show looking far better than she should. If you didn’t look too closely at the base of her outfit. Or the fact a sponge fell off as she exited. Lawrence meanwhile looked like the blue and orange cousin of Divina’s bag outfit before A’Whora straight up destroyed the competition with a shiny blue outfit, complete with moving flared shoulders that could flip up at a moment’s notice. And hilariously rocking Sister’s signature make-up. Bimini abandoned her OG idea and looked all the better for it, glorious in a black and red number with plunger embellishments on the bum. Ellie, as always, looked stunning in a candy coated outfit while Sister Sister was a demented, overgrown garden from Princess Peach’s castle and I can’t tell if it is too much or just enough, too much.
Continuing to makeup for her tantrum, Ru praised everyone for elevating their looks before turning to Tayce, who was read by the judges for doing a subpar outfit. That being said, they lived for her flawless hair and face. Lawrence received universal praise from head to toe, despite the pom pom popping on her face. Then came A’Whora who got universal praise and then some, with the judges shocked by her ability to make such a killer outfit in so little time. Bimini received praise for her make-up, while Michelle didn’t live for her hair. And Graham felt she needed to edit the dress, despite it all working as a look. Ellie received praise for making such a delightful, sweet outfit while Sister was read for needing to edit the outfit and completely covering up her body and hiding her face.
Backstage Tayce was gagged to be read as badly as she was, annoyed that they couldn’t take into account how hard she worked. Sister Sister was expecting to land in the bottom two, despite living for her outfit while Bimini kindly reminded her that it is just a lot and that doesn’t mean they didn’t like it. Ellie congratulated herself for killing the challenge and called out everyone that thought she would be the next to go, with Sister admitting that she felt Ellie should land in the bottom instead of her.
Ultimately A’Whora took out her second, well-deserved victory, while Ellie was sent to safety. They were joined by Lawrence and Bimini, leaving Tayce and Sister’s gut feelings to turn into predictions as they battled it out to Don’t be So Hard on Yourself by Jess Glynne and girl, did they turn it out. The duo bounced and bopped around the stage, feeling every lyric but maybe because I love her so, but this was Tayce’s lip sync from the very moment, vogueing and dipping, and as such, she saved herself again while poor Sister sadly exited the competition.
Despite being pretty shady and dejected during Untucked, Sister took her exit with grace and was thrilled to have had the chance to shine on such a large stage. I pulled her in for a hug and congratulated her on doing so well, and for hilariously changing her entire face mid-season, continuity be damned. Providing an epic bookend with continuity queen Tia, of course. Speaking of courses, we then celebrated her run by proving the don’t make friends with salad rule wrong with a Sister Blistered Corn and Bean Salad.
I easily grow tired of the same old salads day in and day out and I guess glorious ones like this are the reason why. Sweet, charred, tart and packing a unami punch – thanks char! – it is both refreshing and robust, which is not an easy feat.
Sister Blistered Corn and Bean Salad Serves: 4-6.
Ingredients 4 corn cobs, cleaned and debearded (if that is the term) 200g green beans, trimmed and halved 2 ½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil salt and pepper, to taste 2 tbsp champagne vinegar 1 French shallot, minced 2 tsp poppy seeds 1 tsp honey 1 tsp Dijon mustard 4 cups baby spinach 1 beetroot, peeled and grated
Method Place a griddle over medium heat and once scorching, rub the corn with some oil and cook, turning occasionally for about 15 minutes, or until charred. Remove from the heat and slice the kernels off in chunks and pop in a large bowl..
Toss the beans with some oil and a good whack of salt and pepper and cook for a few minutes in the still hot griddle. Once bright green and starting to char, transfer to the bowl with the corn.
Meanwhile, pop the vinegar, shallot, seeds, honey, mustard and 2 tbsp of olive oil in a jug and whisk until well combined.
Arrange the spinach and beetroot in a bowl, top with the corn and beans and drizzle generously with the dressing before devouring. Smugly, since health.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK the queens returned from their seven month COVID hiatus. Yes, SEVEN. MONTHS. In which time Tayce and A’Whora lived together and Ellie had to work the drive through to make ends meet. Tragically poor Veronica contracted COVID (in addition to her previous case of rat-bite fever) meaning we were down a cast member leading to Joe being voted to return to the competition to complete the second girl group for RuRuVision song contest. And as you would no doubt now have stuck in your head, let’s just say BING BANG BONG both groups were amazing. Though the United Kingdolls killed the show and snatched victory. Over on the other team, Tia was deemed too regional, while Joe made jokes about H&M, leading to an epic Ru rant before Joe was eliminated first. Again.
Backstage the girls were well and truly shook about Joe’s second departure, with Tayce in particular shocked by the fact she kind of just gave up in the lip sync. Tia meanwhile was feeling her oats to be the first lip sync assassin in the UK. Obviously that didn’t last long as talk turned to Ru’s epic H&M tirade, with the safe girls particularly surprised that it was bad enough to require an apology on the runway. Sister opted to get shady and pointed out that Tia got the worst critiques from Ru, with Lawrence stepping in to point out she also was told to step it up and given she compiled A’Whora’s ideas, glass houses etc. Pretty much.
Oh and then the editors spoiled that Bimini wins the episode, given she counted herself as winning two challenges with all the other tallies correct. So congratulations, you icon.
The next day Bimini indeed entered the Werk Room with only one badge, before congratulating Lawrence on snagging three wins in a row. While Tayce just wanted her to share the love around from now on. Ellie meanwhile opted to keep things interesting and asked Tia how exactly she plans to up her game on the runway and when the answer didn’t really say much, things got fiery. Thankfully they were interrupted by Ru who arrived to announce that this week’s Maxi Challenge they will be playing the iconique tiara, Snatch Game.
Much to everyone’s delight.
The queens all split up to talk through their characters with Ellie giving off her best Vicky Pollard, while Lawrence gave out advice like she was the second coming of Ru. Bimini meanwhile was making jokes about A’Whora and Tayce’s past before the latter opened up about being terrified of Snatch Game, though that she was confident in her choice of playing Kath herself, Jane Turner. Ru joined the fray to chat through their choices, with Tia bravely telling Ru that she will be bringing it on the runway from now on before announcing she’d be playing Shirley Bassey in the game. Someone she has never done before. Leading to Ru talking her into playing Mel B instead. Ellie was sticking with Vicky Pollard as she spent her childhood bouncing off her twin brother playing the role. This led to Ellie having a wee bit of a breakdown thinking about how important her brother is to her and ugh, I love them all.
Lawrence had Ru smiling before even sitting down at the table before sharing she’d be playing Miriam Margoles. And then had Ru in stitches, leading me to believe she will slay but since the editors spoiled us, we know she doesn’t slay enough for victory. Speaking of said victory, Bimini dropped by to announce she will be playing the iconic Katie Price – who I hooked up with Peter Andre – and ugh, it makes all the sense now. A’Whora meanwhile will be playing Louie Spence and while I don’t know him, he sounds glorious. Not so glorious is A’Whora getting in her head, breaking down about her insecurities and ugh, I love the broken hearted little villainess.
Oh and then Sister apparently never got to chat to Ru or tell us what she was doing.
Thankfully we cut straight to the Snatch Game set featuring Michelle Visage and THE GC herself, Gemma Collins where we learnt Sister would be playing Psychic Sally. Sadly she didn’t tell Tia that changing to Mel B would be a bad idea because as much as I love her, her Mel B was scarily devoid of spice. See what I did there? On the flipside, Tayce was killing the game from the start and immediately made the upcoming Down Under girls question their choices of playing Kath Day-Knight.
While Tayce was good though, it was Bimini’s challenge from the opening seconds giving one liners, dedicated impersonation and had me in absolute hysterics. Speaking of dedicated impersonation, Lawrence was committed to honouring Miriam but completely devoid of comedy. Rounding out the gang, A’Whora was camp and charming, Sister was fun and Ellie was aggressive and confusing. Oh and then Tayce set herself up to yell at Ru for calling her chooky and ugh, give her the damn crown.
Elimination Day arrived with Lawrence and Tia feeling pretty shit about themselves after bombing Snatch Game, particularly since the former is a comedy queen and the latter is yet to score a win. Lawrence opened up about feeling the need to always be strong for her community and hiding behind a mask, with Tia – of course – reminding her that she is worth it and allowed to feel things. Tayce meanwhile checked in with Ellie and her breakdown the day before, with Ellie sharing how much her brother’s support has meant to her and how it got him through a difficult childhood when he was kicked out of home by her father. Until gag of the season, Ellie’s mum turned around and kicked out Ellie’s dad instead when he gave her an ultimatum.
Ru, Michelle and Alan were joined by Jesse Ware to witness the Prehistoric Drag runway where A’Whora opened the show in a full on corset of bones complete with fur and ugh, it is amazing. Tayce meanwhile was stunning as a voodoo priestess complete with guttural screams. Sister looked like Peg Bundy if she was on The Flintstones but with Patsy Stone’s wig, Tia showed body – finally – as a slutty pterodactyl. With a baseball cap like she is Boston Rob. Oh and then Bimini was GORGEOUS as the sexiest, floating bacteria and I think this is the moment we will look back on as when we realised Bimini was winning this season. Poor Lawrence had to follow the ultimate slay giving Roseanne as Peg Bundy in The Flintstones before Ellie gave straight up Pebbles Flintstone.
Ultimately Sister and Ellie were sent to safety, leaving the other girls to be critiqued. A’Whora kicked off the show with the judges admitting that the choice of Louie Spence was brave but that they weren’t sure if it paid off. They did love her outfit though. Tayce meanwhile received universal praise for her Snatch Game, with the judges loving how much fun she was clearly having. And while they loved her runway and the fact she gave something different, Ru clocked her hip pads and you could see the moment she thought Ru was going to yell at her.
Poor Tia was read for being one note on Snatch Game and for giving a sub par outfit, despite finally showing body. This led to Tia breaking down about not proving herself to Ru and damn, I hate to see. Next up Bimini received universal praise for literally everything, from Katie’s wisp, the hilarious one liners and the white-eyed amoeba runway, which is head and shoulders above everything else that has ever appeared on the runway. Oh and then Lawrence, she had the judges laughing when they went to her which only made her performance crueler, given it was a total bomb. Lawrence then started to sob as the judges praised her charisma, with her sharing she built up that persona to survive childhood and it is honestly so relatable.
Backstage Ellie and Sister were congratulating each other on surviving the hardest challenge before the tops and bottoms joined them. Tayce and Bimini were clearly thrilled with their critiques, while Tia was bitterly disappointed to clearly be in the bottom again. Talk turned to Lawrence who immediately started to cry again, struggling to accept that she bombed a challenge. Much to A’Whora’s chagrin, who was annoyed that Lawrence is falling apart at the first sign of weakness.
Obviously Bimini took out her victory not just because of the editors spoiling it at the top of the episode but because I watched her absolutely destroy everyone all episode. Tayce was rightly sent to safety, while A’Whora was gagged to join her, leaving frontrunner Lawrence to lip sync for her life against Tia to Touch Me by Cathy Dennis. And oh girl, did Lawrence light a fire under herself. Serving comedy as she hit every lyric, she commanded your attention and while Tia once again slayed and showed off her legs, she was no match for the triple winner as Lawrence sent her from the competition.
Backstage I pulled Tia in for a massive hug and assured her that while she wasn’t able to take out a win, she truly won people’s hearts and as such, is destined for greatness on All Stars. I mean, she was fun, friendly and gave a hell of a confessional. AND kept her hair the same during the lockdown for continuity when Sister Sister literally replaced her entire face. She is the moment (as is Sister, TBH). As such, I toasted her killer, memorable run with a batch of Tia Biscoffi Donuts.
Biscoff is the new nutella in that we’re all eating it out of the jar like it’s peanut butter – the OG, of course – and injecting it into any and all foods. Specifically donuts like this, which are, in a word, amazing. Like Tia.
Tia Biscoffi Donut Serves: 6-8.
Ingredients 150g water 500g flour 60g raw caster sugar, plus extra for coatin’ 7g dried yeast 4 eggs 4 tsp cinnamon 2 tsp kosher salt 125g unsalted butter softened sunflower oil, for fryin’ 2 cups Biscoff spread, for fillin’ 200g white chocolate 15 Biscoff cookies, for decoratin’
Method Combine the water, flour, sugar, yeast, egg, salt and a teaspoon of cinnamon in the bowl of a stand mixer and best on medium-low speed for about 10 minutes, or until a ball forms. Still going, add the butter in 25g chunks and mix until well combined before adding the next portion. Once everything is in, keep it mixing for about 5 minutes or until smooth and springy when touched.
Transfer to an oiled bowl and cover with cling, and leave to prove for 2-3 hours or until doubled in size. Punch back the dough, return to the bowl, recover with cling and transfer to the fridge to rest overnight.
When it is chilled and well proven – and you’ve had a nice rest – divide the dough into 16 equal portions, roll into balls and place on a lined baking sheet. Leave to prove one final time for a couple of hours, or until doubled.
Combine the rest of the cinnamon in a bowl with about ½ cup of raw caster sugar.
Once they have puffed, place a pot of 15cm of oil over medium high heat and bring to 180C. When the oil is hot enough, cook the doughnuts a couple at a time for a few minutes before flipping and cooking for a further few minutes, or until golden and cooked through. Toss through the cinnamon sugar and transfer to a wire rack while you repeat the process.
Melt the white chocolate, either in a double boiler or in the microwave and allow to cool slightly. Transfer the Biscoff into a piping bag and pipe a couple of tablespoons into the centre of each donut, dip them in the white chocolate and then top with a biscuit and serve immediately and devour, joyously.
Previously on Drag Race UK the dolls worked tirelessly for four weeks, culminating in a glorious morning TV show where Bimini was an absolute star, despite Lawrence slaying and taking out her second win of the season. At the other end of the pack Sister Sister faded while Ginny stayed at one note which resulted in the duo landed in the bottom to lip sync for their lives. Only Ginny woke up and chose chaos that day – which, relatable given everything going on in the world at that time – exiting the competition mid-lip sync while Sister Sister gave it her all for safety. Unaware that she was already safe, thanks to Ginny.
Backstage the queens were in shock after Ginny self-eliminated, with Sister confirming that she didn’t even realise that Ginny had quit and that she was on stage by herself. Lawrence spoke about being pissed off about Ginny quitting, while Sister Sister wondered whether she deserved to still be in the competition or whether she is now just there by default. The queens sat down to kiki on the couch with A’Whora sliding back into the villain role by saying she was more shocked that Ginny was in the bottom two over Veronica, which continued to annoy Veronica until Bimini pointed out that her killer look clearly saved her. Veronica warned that nothing will keep her down and she will fight it out until the end. Before Tayce then jumped in and called her cocky, leading to another fight and damn, are these girls stressed.
Tia admitted that if they were all judging the bottom two, things would be different before Lawrence cut her off and pissed her off. This led to them almost cutting each other, until Ru arrived to announce that EVERYONE will be going home because Miss Rona – what I think is making all the girls a little more stressed than usual, TBH – and reconvene once it is safe.
Seven months later, Ru decorated the expanded Werk Room for a homecoming party with A’Whora first to re-enter, energised, nipped and tucked and ready to fight. Bimini was glorious, plasticised and hating on COVID, Ellie loved working the drive through again back home, Lawrence was feeling rusty after not working for so long, Sister Sister was fiery and loving her face work while Tayce was charming, ridiculous and now living with A’Whora full time. Oh and Tia was charming, lovely and didn’t change a thing, aside from less nervous energy.
While the girls awaited Veronica’s arrival, Ru returned in full Ginny Lemon cosplay to announce that Veronica has COVID-19 and as such, will not be returning to the competition. But she is invited to win Season 3. With the tragic news out of the way, Ru invited the three person brit Crew to entertain the girls in giant animal outfits. Wait, no, psych – it is the three eliminated queens, who have returned to plead their case to replace Veronica in the competition. Joe simply asked the queens to give her the chance to show a little bit more, Cherry reminded everyone she is a nurse and worked through the pandemic and come on, she deserves it for that alone. Oh and Asttina shared that she has evolved – and looked even sexier, somehow – which TBH, should scare the queens. Ultimately Ellie, Tia, Sister Sister, Lawrence and Tayce all voted to give Joe another shot in the competition while A’Whora and Bimini weren’t scared, voting for Asttina return.
At least they got gift bags, no? But honestly, not one person voted for the iconic, gorgeous frontline worker?! After the year she just had – how rude!
With the new top eight set in stone, Ru announced that for this week’s Maxi Challenge she would pit the queens against each other in two girl groups at RuRuVision, writing and recording their own lyrics to UK, Hun? and perform it live on the mainstage, complete with choreography. As the returning queen, Joe Black was named one of the team captains with Lawrence handed the other given she won the last challenge. Joe quickly snatched up Tia, Sister and Ellie Diamond while Lawrence snagged Bimini and Tayce, with A’Whora joining them by default. Much to her absolute disgust and disappointment.
The groups quickly split up, with Team Joe thrilled by her selections and the queens confident they will win. Meanwhile Bimini was feeling her oats on the other couches and ugh, this is going to be good. We flipped back to Joe’s Team who selected the name Bananadrama, while A’Whora suggested the name United Kingdolls for Team Lawrence, which is correct in every way. Team Joe spoke about potential outfits, with Joe nervous about not really having anything ‘young’ enough for a girl group. Meanwhile the United Kingdolls were laughing about the other team, while Bananadrama felt they were ignoring the fact the challenge requires a high level of camp rather than looking like a girl group.
That being said, the Frock Destroyers would like a word.
Ru returned to chat to the queens, with Tia sharing that finding out that Veronica won’t be returning shook her, however the break was long enough to make her believe in herself rather than needing her friend’s support. Joe meanwhile was excited to get another chance to shine, Ellie was confident in her singing and dancing ability and more importantly, was confident in Sister’s new teeth. Despite any growing pains settling in with their new size. Meanwhile Ru loved the name United Kingdolls, though seemed nervous about A’Whora’s lack of singing ability. Though Tayce was confident in their diversity as a team and was sure that not being a one note group would carry them to victory.
Bananadrama were first up to record the track with MNEK on the mainstage, with Sister nervous about dropping the lyrics with her new teeth. Though she knocked it out of the park, as did Ellie living her Miley best life. Joe was less confident, though was camp and charming and you know, if Toto can add extra syllables to lines so can Joe. See-gar, or sig-ar, be damned. Oh and Tia slayed her rap. A’Whora was up first for the United Kingdolls, giving demented, hilarious, erotic energy and I live. Bimini was doing unintentional key changes before MNEK reminded her to inject Bimini, which she knocked out of the park when she did. Tayce’s lyrics were fire, as was her energy and ugh, I’m getting goosebumps. Will this challenge be as iconic as last season’s? Please. Lawrence started out nervous, bland and slow. But I have a feeling this is another fake out, right?
Team Joe got to work on their choreography with Ellie and Tia taking the lead, eventually butting heads given Ellie was trying to go creative while Tia was trying to keep it simple enough for Joe who admitted to not being able to dance. Tayce and Bimini meanwhile led the other team, not caring about Lawrence’s nerves giving them creative choreography and repeating the affirmation that Lawrence can and will get it. Though Tayce did admit it was less affirmation and potentially more of a threat.
Elimination Day arrived with Bimini and Lawrence bonding while painting their faces, talking about how difficult it was to survive throughout the pandemic. Bimini shared that she felt very insecure, knowing her career could fall over so quickly and that is something she is still processing. Lawrence shared that she is a stress eater and being stuck at home made the entire situation kind of snowball on top of her. A’Whora and Tayce were chatting about feeling like this is the first week again, not wanting to go home and to show that they’ve used the last seven months to apply the judges’ feedback.
MNEK joined Ru, Michelle and Graham on the mainstage for the RuRuVision finals with the United Kingdolls first up and yes, it was a fake-out edit with Lawrence as the girls absolutely slayed. Lawrence was perky and hilarious, A’Whora was all sex, Bimini served demented Spice Girl in the absolute best way and well Tayce was kinda, sorta the Beyonce, no? Well, until Bimini did the splits off a stool. Bananadrama had a tough act to follow but arrived full of energy, Joe was a camp delight, Sister Sister was a star, Ellie was a slutty schoolgirl and Tia was her usual wacky, delight.
On the A Day at the Seaside runway, Bimini was a glamourous, polished delight in sea blue. Tayce was stunning in nets and shells, A’Whora gave us a literally saucy bag of chips, in the best way possible while Lawrence was a glamorous buoy. Meanwhile Ellie was the sexiest seagull I’ve ever seen, no doubt flooding Plucka Duck’s basement. Tia was a sexy soft-serve, upping the runway game from the last look of filming while Sister was also a bag of chips, this time with a seagull going in for the kills. The winner of the runway however was Joe, a windswept mess covered in ice cream or bird shit.
Ultimately the United Kingdolls took out victory, handing all four queens a RuPeter badge and leaving the other group onstage to receive their critiques. The judges felt Ellie’s performance was a little bit flat, however they felt that her runway proved that she is willing to go all out and that they ultimately lived for her. Tia’s lyrics received universal praise for her lyrics and performance, though was read for still not knowing how to dress her body. This led to Ru reading her for filth and encouraging her to actually apply the critiques. Sister was praised for pushing herself in the performance, though they felt her bag of chips was the weaker of the two. Joe was read for not really being part of the group in the performance, despite it being hilarious. And then the judges lived for her runway. Though they hated on her outfit in the performance, leading to Ru going on an epic rant against the queens wearing off the rack. To quote her, “fuck H&M.” And I live.
Backstage the United Kingdolls were thrilled by their victory, congratulating each other on a job well done. Particularly A’Whora who they labelled the best bag of chips, leading to A’Whora flipping out about Sister actually copying the look in the break. The bottom queens arrived and turned the focus to Ru’s tantrum, with Joe and Tia sharing how they were read for absolute filth. Tayce quickly threw it back to the battle of the chips, leading to an epic blow up between the queens with Sister particularly hurt that her creativity was under attack.
The queens returned to the mainstage, with Ru apologising for going in on the girls and reminding them that now, more than ever, they need to seize their moment and be the stars that they are. Plus, she is still working through cabin fever. Ellie was the first to be sent to safety from her group, with Sister soon following, leaving Tia and Joe to lip sync for their life. And damn, did they redeem Don’t Leave Me This Way after Mimi’s murder, Joe perfectly leaning into her spookiness while Tia showed skin, served flips and straight up refused to be sent out of the competition after just returning, pumping that performance with all the passion she could muster, unsuccessful flips be damned.
As such, that left poor Joe Black to once again exit the competition as the first boot of another filming block.
Despite technically becoming the Francesca Hogi of Drag Race UK, Joe is an absolute icon and like Kelly Mantle and Vivacious before her, sometimes an icon just isn’t meant for a competition. Particularly if their idea of staying young is rocking some H&FuckingM. Once again, I pulled her in for a hug and reiterated how much I loved her, this time explaining that another rapid exit is both hilarious and memorable and as such, I was willing to dish out a fresh dish of Chorizjoe Blacroquettes.
Spicy, carby and oh so comforting, these are the perfect way to dull the pain of some repetitive eliminations. Plus, the world remains on fire so all we have left are easy, comforting meals to keep us afloat.
Chorizjoe Blacroquettes Serves: 6.
Ingredients 2 chorizo sausages, roughly diced 100g butter ⅔ cup flour, plus extra for dredging 1 ½ cups milk small handful parsley, roughly chopped 3 garlic cloves, minced 1 tsp chilli flakes 2 eggs, lightly whisked 2 ¼ cups breadcrumbs vegetable oil, to deep-fry
Method Fry the chorizo in a medium-high pan until nice and crisp. Drain on a plate lined with paper towel and allow to cool slightly.
Place the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and melt until foamy before whisking in the flour and cooking for a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the milk before returning to the heat and cooking for a couple of minutes or until thickened. Fold through the chorizo, parsley, garlic and chilli, and season well with pepper. Transfer to a container and allow to cool before covering and popping in the fridge for a few hours to firm up.
When you’re ready to rock, pop the extra flour in a bowl, the egg in another and you guessed it, the breadcrumbs in a third. Using wet hands, grab 2 tablespoons of the mixture and roll into a small, fat sausage. Roll in the flour, followed by the egg and finally in the breadcrumbs before transferring to a lined baking sheet. Repeat the process until the mixture is all gone.
To cook, place about 10cm of oil in a large saucepan and once hot, fry the croquettes for a couple of minutes each side or until golden and cooked through. Repeat the process until done. Then, devouring greedily.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, the queens were split into duos and while everyone was thrilled to work with their bestie, Ru gagged them with the fact they would actually be forced to battle against them. In the ultimate who wore it best. While some people lucked out to be partnered with weaker fashion queens, Tayce and Ellie were unluckily in the bottom five due to how strong A’Whora and Lawrence were, as the latter took out her first challenge of the season. Ginny meanwhile took up the judges’ challenge to go sexy, while Tia bombed and Asttina was read for being basic. As the latter two lip synced for their lives, Tia pulled out all the stops and saved herself, booting Asttina from the competition.
The queens returned to the Werk Room with the girls still shell shocked by Asttina’s departure from the competition. Particularly A’Whora, who was mainly concerned that she was eliminated by none other than her nemesis Baroness Basic. Meanwhile Tia was hoping to use the moment to remind herself that she is a sickening performer, given she survived against such formidable competition. Ginny grew tired of Lawrence Chaney constantly talking and interjecting in their support of Asttina, telling her to shut up and leading to some awkward fighting. Add to that A’Whora joking about being ready to wash Tia’s message off the mirror and ugh, the girls are ready to fight. Not necessarily in the competitive way.
Tensions appeared to have died down the next day as Ginny led the queens in congratulating Lawrence on her first victory. Tayce spoke about being shocked that Tia survived over her bestie Asttina, leading to more drama, as Veronica stepped in to defend her friend, reminding everyone that Tia did step it up. In the lip sync, which is why she is still here. A’Whora then interjected, encouraging Tia and saying that she has noticed growth since the start of the competition but given Tia doesn’t really care for her opinion, it was clear it meant nothing.
Is this some COVID related stress coming through? Because it. Is. Tense. SO tense.
They were thankfully interrupted by Ru and the Brit Crew, who wheeled in a table full of cakes. And baked goods too, which the queens needed to promote as their own goodies. Tia kicked things off listing acronyms and lusting after Ru, crawling across the floor selling sex. Ellie was awkward in the most charming way possible, Bimini was hilariously aggressive about Brexit, Ginny was a smutty delight, Tayce fingered herself with a Vienna Finger, Sister did Carrie, Veronica was demented, on brand and glorious, A’Whora focused on Ginny Lemon and Lawrence, well, she was charming, funny and focused on scat. Rightly so though, Bimini took out victory proving sometimes, smut isn’t always best.
Ru then announced that for this week’s Maxi Challenge, the queens would be hosting their own morning shows appealing to the broadest range of demographics possible. As the victor of the mini challenge, Bimini would be able to select her role while the rest of the queens would fight over the scraps. Oh and to make it all the more difficult, the performance would be live. The queens ventured to the couch to go through the roles, with Bimini electing for the Gen Z party animal co-host opposite Tayce, Ginny was cast as the hippy weather girl, Lawrence and Ellie went with pre-school hosts, A’Whora and Tia decided to work together for once as the Essex girl financial experts, leaving Veronica and Sister to land as goth party planners.
Talk turned to their backgrounds in improv, with Sister concerned about Veronica’s decided lack of experience. Meanwhile A’Whora and Tia vowed to be besties while picking out wigs as Bimini and Tayce immediately tried to find complementary outfits. Ru arrived to chat to the girls, with Ginny feeling very confident about the weather role and urgh, I hope she wins and proves us right. Ru was worried about Sister and Veronica’s ability to sell goth, with the latter explaining she deliberately took the dregs of the roles to show her versatility and damn, please don’t fall flat, Veronica. Ellie made Ru awkward by asking why she doesn’t say her name in a Scottish accent like she does Lawrence and girl, you in danger Pearl. Ru was charmed by Tia and A’Whora’s concept before casually stirring the pot, with the girls admitting to not being close or having the desire to ever interact.
The girls ventured to set to be coached by TV legend Lorraine Kelly. Wait, no, there was a pep talk and then girls were sent live in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 …
Bimini and Tayce got things off to a charming, vapid and energetic start as the hosts, with Lorraine particularly proud of Bimini’s attention to detail and her ability to serve lots of funny moments. After the break Veronica and Sister were less prepared making their anti-birthday cake, with Veronica tragically showing her first sign of weakness as Sister tried to bring the funny and cover the fact they were both scared. In that commercial break Lorraine had nothing to say, while poor Veronica immediately commenced beating herself up.
We returned to the hosts who continued to charm before Ellie and Lawrence arrived and ate it up as the Dragony Aunts. Caller Michelle asked how to avoid resting bitch face, with Ellie literally painting a smile on Lawrence’s charming bloody face. No doubt on their way to the win. Tia and A’Whora were up next, hilarious as the most demented branches of Cheryl Hole’s family tree and proving that A’Whora really is there for that crown and ready to prove she is funny as well as gorgeous. Rounding out the show was Ginny who was demented and hilarious as she was pummeled by the weather, even if it was a wee bit confusing for Lorraine and the girls.
Elimination Day rolled around with Sister nervous about being brought down by Veronica’s performance, while the rest of the queens were really happy with what they delivered. A’Whora and Tia were shocked to have slayed together as a duo, while Veronica jumped on board and agreed that she felt like her performance was so bad that it brought down Sister’s performance. This annoyed Lawrence, who was sick of Sister blaming other people every time she fell flat. Before any drama could explode, Ginny reminded them they have a runway to prepare for and as such, they needed to align their chakras and get to bloody work.
She and Sister then kikied while getting ready, with Sister Sister sharing that she always feels like she is holding back and trying to be polite, rather than letting go. Add to that her inner saboteur and she admitted that she is really struggling under the pressure of the competition. Ginny gave her a delightful peptalk and told her to start believing in herself before they hugged and pledged their love for each other. Meanwhile A’Whora and Tia continued to bond over their insecurities, with the former sharing that what goes through her head is always worse than anything she could hear from the judges. A’Whora then admitted to trashing Tia in the last untucked, apologising for what she said before sharing that she has always pushed others away and put people down due to her insecurities and ugh, their bonding session is so sweet and nice with Tia promising that A’Whora has a circle of sisters now. They then both apologised for everything they’ve done and said, hugging and making up.
Again, I love all of the UK queens so damn much.
On the Monster Mash-up runway, Veronica was somehow glamourous as a piggy Medusa, Sister Sister was glorious as a mummy werewolf, Bimini slayed as a demonic Playboy bunny, Tayce was a gorgeous corpse bride vampire while Ginny was a neon, acid delight. Lawrence was a mash-up of horror movie murderers in the best way possible, while Ellie was glorious as a Goblin-Werewolf, Tia was gorgeous as a voodoo Medusa and A’Whora continued to slay the week as a zombie-Elvira doing Cher on vegas. Damn, let’s just say it was a good episode for A’Whora.
Ultimately Veronica, Sister Sister, Bimini, Ginny, Lawrence and A’Whora were deemed the tops and bottoms, while Tayce, Ellie and Tia were sent to kiki backstage. My sweet Veronica was praised for her glorious runway, however was read for absolute filth for her Camden Goth Party Planner as she didn’t go far enough. Veronica agreed that she was in her head, apologising for bringing down Sister. Speaking of Sister, she was read for not standing out and trying to take her moment, though the judges were ok with her outfit though admitted it could have gone further. My dear Bimini received universal praise for her performance and commitment to the character, while Michelle wished that the details were in her runway to take her over the edge.
Ginny was praised for being good at improv, though the judges felt it didn’t go far enough and gave no light and shade. Ru challenged her to take it to the next level, which is something that Michelle thanked her for doing on the runway, despite still feeling she could take it further. The judges once again loved literally everything Lawrence gave them, particularly the fact she is versatile and they never know what to expect from her on the runway. Lastly A’Whora was rightly given universal praise for her killer performance on the morning show and once again the judges loved her outfit, though Michelle wished that she could let herself be uglier.
Backstage the safe queens were thrilled to be such, with Ellie asking who they all felt did the worst with she and Tayce naming Veronica and suggesting she should be the one to go out. As did Tia, after much deliberation about admitting that about her bestie. The tops and bottoms joined them with A’Whora disappointed that her outfit fell flat before Ginny broke down about being called one-note, feeling the judges just don’t get her as she started to just shut down. Sister Sister spoke about how disappointed she was to not actually step up in the challenge when she really needed to, with Veronica encouraging her and saying that the critique was mainly about letting Veronica overpower the scene.
Talk turned to who the safe girls thought should go, with Ellie admitting they unanimously thought it should be Veronica. This obviously upset Veronica, with Tia quickly clarifying that she thought she would be in the bottom but knew she would slay a lip sync. This led to Veronica warning them that they underestimated her once and they really shouldn’t do it again. A’Whora tried to give her a pep talk, pointing out Tia was underestimated and used that to kill the lip sync. Which only upset Veronica more, telling them she knows what to do and is going to serve it, thank you very much.
The queens returned to the runway with Bimini and A’Whora sent to safety, handing Lawrence her second victory of the competition. Ru then gagged Veronica by sending her to safety, leaving besties Sister and Ginny to battle it out in the lip sync to You Keep Me Hanging On by Kim Wilde. Or so we thought. As Ginny promised to be punk, smirking as the song started, walked to the back of the stage and chuckled as they quit the competition. As Sister Sister slayed, serving the lip sync as she desperately tries to keep herself from getting eliminated. Completely unaware that that had already happened. But let’s be honest, it was great to finally see her have her break-out moment, as I love her.
As the judges and Ru laughed away, they saved Sister Sister from elimination while backstage Ginny was laughing it up at refusing to face off against their friend and going out on their own terms. Given Gin was positively feeling their oats, I quickly pulled them in for my final pre-COVID cuddle and congratulated them on showcasing how wonderful a performer they are. While the rest of the girls were hearing the siren announcing that they too would be heading home to wait out the pandemic, Gin and I laughed it up as we smashed a Ginny Lemon Tart in honour of a short yet memorable run.
This glorious little number is a classy take on the lemon tart. The herby notes of the gin perfectly cut through the tart of the citrus and sweetness, giving you a delightfully gossy dessert that feels just a little bit posher than usual.
Ginny Lemon Tart Serves: 12.
Ingredients 260g salted butter, at room temperature 450g raw caster sugar 8 eggs 500g flour 60ml gin 2 lemons, zested and juiced
Method Preheat the oven to 200C.
Combine the butter with 200g of the sugar in a stand mixer and cream on high speed until just together. Add two of the eggs, and mix again until just combined. Reduce to low and slowly add in the flour and mix until it just comes together. Transfer to a floured service and lightly work into a ball.
Roll the pastry until a few millimetres and press into a large perforated tart tin. Pop the tin on a baking sheet and transfer to the freezer to chill for five minutes or so. Once the dough has firmed up a bit, prick the base of the shell with a fork and then pop in the oven and cook for 15 minutes, or until gloriously golden. Remove from the oven and leave to chill on a wire rack while you get to work on the custard.
Pop the remaining sugar and egg in a saucepan with the gin, zest and juice, and stir until well combined. Place over low heat and stir constantly, cook until it reaches 75C. Strain through some cheesecloth into a jug and remove any bubbles from the top. Gently pour the mixture into the cooled shell and return to the oven to cook for ten minutes, or until the centre of the tart is still jiggling. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about half an hour before transferring to the fridge to set.