Our Baker Chats to the Queens of Daytime TV

Founder and chief Baking Officer explains how they came to sponsor this tour and chats to some of the stars of the show.

The team at Ireland Loves Baking shares the nation’s passion for baking, but we are on a mission to add more fun and excitement back into baking. We want to inspire everyone to try or learn something new. We wanted to create baking experiences that friends, and families could share, have fun doing it together, and help others in need. So not only does everything taste good, but it does good. And this tour is the perfect fun, and exciting treat the nation needs after the past 16 months. With such a fantastic line-up of celebrity hosts, including the excellent Rustie Lee, laughter is guaranteed. Alongside an afternoon of great British food and the opportunity to help a truly wonderful charity – how could we say no.”

3 of the 5 stars of the show and the chattiest women on the telly have a socially distanced chat with Greg the Baker.

Founder of Ireland Love Baking, Greg Wixted, caught up with three of the Chattiest women on TV to learn more about their upcoming tour Lunch and Laughs Live and what they love to bake and get some juicy gossip, of course. He is joined by Singer, Talent Manager, Actor, and TV talent show judge Zoe Tyler, who came up with the idea. The legendary and talented Chef, Food Writer, TV Presenter, and Singer. Rustie Lee. They are joined by  Kate Thornton, who has hosted and written numerous radio shows for BBC Radio 2. She presented some of the biggest TV shows, including The X FactorLoose Women, and This Morning and too many more to mention. She now hosts White Wine Question Time, her hugely successful podcast. 

With only 3 weeks to go, I got the chance to catch up with three of the celebrity hosts of Lunch & Laughs Live as they get ready for their nationwide tour starting on the 3rd of September.

Tell me, Zoe, how did you come up with the idea, and was it easy to convince the others to participate? Well, I have an entertainment agency, so I create show ideas all the time, and a few years ago put it together and thought it would work for a short tour, and here we are !! It was; actually, just the thought of spending some time together when we are all in different places was a real bonus.

Rustie, what is so special about this show?.  Getting to experience fabulous women to chat about their incredible life experiences to laugh and have the opportunity of meeting our fans and sharing a fantastic afternoon with them. 

Kate, are you looking forward to the most about this tour?.  After 18 months of lockdowns and covid restrictions, we've been living through the strangest of times, and I think we've all missed the simple pleasures in life, like grabbing lunch with a friend, shopping with mates, going out to see a show. It's the perfect day out with the girls, and the fact I get to do it with my own mates is the cherry on the cake for me! The fact Zoe's brought all of that into the mix for Lunch and Laughs is all credit to her.

Kate, what makes this show different from others?.  It's a different kind of show - there's the social element with the shopping and the lunch, and then you get a performance wrapped around it and all in plenty of time for the last bus home! As well as great chat and skits on stage, we've also got great music for some much-needed singalongs. Rustie is bringing her best cocktail mixing skills to the party for the ultimate crowd participation- Carol's liver is already in training! What could possibly go wrong?!

Rustie, is it hard having to keep the conversation going during a show like Loose Women; what is the secret ?. Or more like a group of ladies around the kitchen table having a good old natter?. It's fun having chats with a group of women; it's heart-warming to be able to chat about anything without fear and put the world to rights; it is a beautiful experience.

Zoe, Don't you run out of things to say to each other by the end of the day? No, never; it's how to stop the chatter that worries me.

I have to ask Rustie; what's it like working with Christopher Biggins?  it is always a pleasure working with Christopher Biggins. He is so funny, and every couple of weeks, we work together playing bingo on bingoallstars.co.uk.   

Kate, How good a baker are you and what do you love to bake?. I’m slightly annoyed at my lack of flair when it comes to baking cakes, but I can hold my own with pasty and bread. I kept promising myself in lockdown that I’d learn to bake better but it didn’t quite happen. I’m more of a cook than a baker. I love baking bread - and then eat it warm with salty butter.


Kate & Zoe. Lots of Acting Professionals said they found lockdown hard as they were so used to being busy –did you turn to baking or booze ?

Zoe: Not booze but I think I ate a lot more, so I have been on a diet and lost it all so I feel much better. Kate, I turned to HIIT training and got myself fit, as much for my mind as for my body. But that’s not to say that wine wasn’t also a regular feature in my lockdown living! I was also lucky enough to be able to work from home and broadcast from my kitchen so I was more fortunate than many. Plus we home schooled, which has given me a newfound respect for teachers! 

Rustie, what’s your funniest or most disastrous kitchen moment? One of the many was preparing a birthday cake for late Dame Vera Lynn and someone jokingly said “don’t call her Dame Edna Everage. I was doing well until I got comfortable when we’re chatting and I called her Dame Edna, it was only when she said Dame Vera ( I looked at Dame Vera and sheepishly and said sorry), I was so embarrassed, it was quite funny.

OK ladies, if you had a bake-off, who would win? 

Kate: I am going to say Rustie for sure 

Rustie: I think Zoe would win, as she loves cooking very much.

Zoe: Hahaha, I have to say, Rustie don't I

Well I think we may just have to put this to test over the coming month and maybe let my customers judge who really is the Bake Off Queen.

We turned into a nation of bakers. Did you lock down bake, and what was your best and worst bake? Zoe: I knew people who never baked and started in lockdown, but I was happy to bake every day. Probably the best thing was some bread because I never bake bread, so I was well chuffed with myself. Worst was one of my banana bread/cakes that was full of mush banana in the middle. Not sure what happened there!

And Finally, Ladies, your Baking Heaven and Baking Hell;.

Rustie:  HEAVEN: I would be making a wedding cake packed with soaked fruit with the marzipan layer and finally the decoration. It's therapeutic for me.

HELL:  My baking hell would be if I had made a beautiful cake and put it in the oven, and 10 minutes in, the power cut and the cake is  ruined.

Zoe: HEAVEN would be surrounded by the best bread and sponge 

BAKING HELL:  Surrounded by the best bread and sponge …. Because I would eat it ALL every crumb. 

Kate: HEAVEN would be fresh-baked bread and delicious butter; it's so simple and delicious. BAKING HELL: I can't think of a baked good I can't get along with! . What's not to like?

Thank you ladies It's been a pleasure chatting and getting to know you, and I am looking forward to seeing you at the start of the tour in Edinburgh on the 3rd of September.