Can you bake?
No. But I can try. It’s the effort that counts, right?
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
I think my strength is my resilience, and my desire to succeed. I think my weakness is to do with ability.
Do you have a signature dish?
Of course. Welsh cakes. They’re just little cakes with raisins in them. They’re really nice warm, literally the best thing. Slightly toasted as well. Yeah, perfect.
Have you ever had any culinary disasters?
Not really, because I tend not to do much cooking. But I dare say this episode of Bake Off might have its share of disasters!
What’s the worst thing you could be asked to make in the competition?
Fondant Fancies. I did try to practise creating fondant fancies, and it turned out looking more like Ditto from Pokémon. That was a bit of a fail. Still, it can only get better from there, surely!
Did you do any baking during lockdown?
Yeah, actually, I did. It was quite hard to find certain products – i.e. flour – it was in high demand. But when I did get my hands on some, I was able to make a few things. We made pizza, me and my girlfriend. We also made brownies.
You’re beginning to sound like a bit of a pro…
Oh no no no. I wasn’t making them. I basically watched my girlfriend make them.
So, she’s the brains of the operation?
Oh yeah, definitely. She has put a lot of pressure on me to get that apron. I’m definitely going to make her proud. [He sounds very doubtful].
If you bring shame upon the household, will you be in trouble with her?
Yeah, probably. But luckily for me, this episode doesn’t come out for a while, so I’ve still got some time on her good side.
Has she helped you out with any of the preparations?
Yeah, she has. She has been a huge help. I don’t know why she would want to help me, because I am pretty much useless.
Are you competitive? How badly do you want to win?
Of course I want to win – nobody wants to come in just to lose – so I am trying. It’s just it’s unlikely to work out. Baking is one of those things where you get better over time, you can’t just wing it. I just don’t have the baking hands to be precise and neat and stuff.
Why is SU2C important to you?
It effects a lot of people – young or old, all types of people. I feel like it’s something I’ve always wanted to be a part of, to raise awareness, trying to raise as much money as possible. I have a large audience, and a large number of them will watch this episode – mainly to see my fail! But hopefully I can help push the Stand Up to Cancer agenda and help them make as much money as possible and help as many people out as possible.
I can’t really see you sitting down and watching Bake Off. Is that right, or are you a fan of the show?
You are half right. I did watch one episode, I watched the Joe Sugg one, because I know Joe. I thought it was quite funny that he passed out. After I got the call, I definitely did my research. That’s mainly because my girlfriend was like “If you ever get called to be on the show, you have to do it.” And funnily enough, literally a few weeks after she said that, I got the call. It was such weird timing.
You’ve filmed your own Bake Off show with the Sidemen – how does the real thing compare?
I guess the real thing is a lot more serious, as I discovered this morning. I felt like I was doing an exam that I didn’t study for. All of a sudden, it got really quiet in the tent, and I was like “Oh, this is real! I have to bake now.” On the videos, everyone just takes the piss [on the Sidemen film]. Also the food is not really edible.
The world of YouTuber is full of high profile disagreements and feuds. Can you see yourself having beef with anyone in the Bake Off tent?
Well, I’m quite outnumbered, gender-wise, so I don’t really see me being able to fend off all three of them. Maybe I’ll have beef with them one by one.
As well as being one of the most popular YouTubers in the world, you have turned your hand to boxing, rapping, acting, business ventures and now baking. Why the desire to constantly do new things?
I think it’s just the idea of just being able to do whatever I want. I find it quite interesting, to work hard at something new. I hate being put in a box. Whenever people think ‘KSI’ I don’t want them to think “He’s just a YouTuber” or “Just a musician”. I want them to think “I don’t really know what he is, he’s just this anomaly that flows everywhere.” I try to push that to my audience as well. You only live once, so you might as well do whatever you want to do, man, and just enjoy it.
If this goes well, could we see you reinvent yourself with a YouTube baking channel?
[Laughs] If I get that Paul Hollywood handshake, then yes!