Wolverhampton mother misses out on TV cooking crown
A Wolverhampton mother who whipped up a storm in the race to be crowned the nation's finest home cook has missed out on the top spot.
Dipa Jakhu secured her place in the final of Britain's Best Home Cook after cooking up a eclectic mix of dishes.
But the 44-year-old was beaten by fellow contestant Pippa Middlehurst after a tough three rounds in front of the judges.
Dipa, who has been married for 20 years, said: "This experience has been absolutely brilliant. I didn't think I would get this far at all.
"The elimination process has taught me so much - I think that's something I really have taken away with me.
"People at work used to tell me I was good at cooking but I never believed it, so maybe this confirms it.
"It's something I'm going to take away and remember for the rest of my life.
The eight-part series was judged by former star of The Great British Bake Off Mary Berry, Chris Bavin of Eat Well For Less, and Dan Doherty, head chef at London's The Duck and Waffle.
During Thursday's BBC One show, judges commented on Dipa's 'resilience' after facing the elimination round during the contest.
Mother-of-three Dipa, who moved to Wolverhampton aged four, had been at risk of leaving the show but managed to make it through to the final.
Judge Mary Berry said: "Because she is always in the elimination, she has had much more practice."
London-born Dipa, who works in Wolverhampton city centre as a civil servant, whipped up a scotch egg with tartar sauce during the first challenge.
But the 40-minute task seemed daunting for the cook, who claimed her confidence had 'completely gone' and revealed she felt light on her feet.
She also seemed to hit a stumbling block after misreading the recipe and boiling two eggs instead of one.
But Dipa managed to turn it around, with the judges claiming the cooking of the egg was 'possibly the best'.
The second challenge saw Dipa cook a chicken breast stuffed with mushrooms, creamy mushroom sauce and mushroom rice.
The 'ultimate main and dessert' challenge saw her whip up lamb shanks with mashed potato, baby carrots and savoy cabbage, as well as a carrot cake.
Commenting following the three-hour task, Mary Berry said: "This is the best of its kind. You have achieved something special. I'm really enjoying it.
The judge went on to say: "This is a great cake, so good."