It was a final that had a nation of baking enthusiasts gripped and left Mary Berry in tears as Nadiya Hussain baked, iced and 'mille-feuilled' her way to victory to be crowned the winner of the Great British Bake-Off 2015.

While Bake-Off heart-throb Tamal Ray and Ian Cumming proved worthy competitors, it seems almost everyone was behind the mother-of-four who was a favourite to win the series. With her ambitious bakes, her wry asides and her emotional meltdowns over chocolate, Nadiya had the British public won over and there was no shortage of people on social media eager to celebrate her victory.

Harry Potter author J K Rowling watched the final in tears, while the chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne was among those to send messages of congratulations to the undisputed star baker.

The Twitter reaction from the general public was heart-warming with Nadiya being recognised for her skills as a baker, while her sparkling personality endeared her to a nation.

But while Nadiya was more concerned with nailing the technical bakes, creating a peacock out of fondant icing and constructing a showstopper wedding cake, her presence on the show had unwittingly sparked a discussion about race. The British Muslim, who hails from Bangladesh, had earlier admitted her initial apprehensions about appearing on the show wearing a headscarf.

In an interview with Radio Times she said: "Originally, I was a bit nervous that perhaps people would look at me, a Muslim in a headscarf, and wonder if I could bake. But I hope that week by week people have realised that I can bake – and just because I'm not a stereotypical British person, it doesn't mean that I am not into bunting, cake and tea.

"I'm just as British as anyone else, and I hope I have proved that. I think the show is a fantastic representation of British society today. The feedback I have had reveals how accepting people are of different cultures and religions. Now people know who I am, I can see how tolerant and accepting British society is".

While most of us really were more interested in the delectable desserts on offer and the occasional culinary disasters on display, there was the small-minded contingent that made the show all about race and nothing else. Controversial Daily Mail columnist Amanda Platell accused of the BBC of political correctness gone mad, suggesting that they had hand-picked their multi-ethnic finalists.

"We are left with Muslim mum Nadiya Hussain, gay doctor Tamal Ray, and New Man Ian Cumming. Poor Flora Shedden never stood a chance. She was far too middle class – and was booted off this week after her chocolate carousel was deemed sub-standard. Perhaps if she'd made a chocolate mosque, she'd have stood a better chance," she said.

Platell was lambasted and her comments were almost universally derided on Twitter as "racist" "homophobic" and "sexist." But sadly there were others like her representing society's most ignorant, who turned to Twitter to bemoan how a "Muslim could win the Great British Bake-Off." With the apt hashtag #VileHuman the offensive tweeter received a well-deserved dressing down.

Others observed that while her determination serves as great example to everyone, Nadiya's win really has little to do with race and much more to do with great baking.

"Dunno why so many are making it an issue (positive or negative) that an Asian lady has won GBBO. Thought it was about cakes not race?" said one commentator.

"Its more then a hijabi winning GBBO Nadiya allowed the nation to see past the hijab. She won us over by her warmth and her wit. Rejoice," said another.

In truth, we were rooting for a woman who endeared us with her wit, who broke our hearts when she cried over a sunken souffle and who inspired us with her determination and her imagination. As proud of being British as she is of being Muslim, in the end Nadiya won The Great British Bake Off for the simple reason that she can bake a bloody good cake.