Ruby Tandoh comes out as gay

Former Great British Bake Off star Ruby Tandoh has come out as gay. The 23-year-old baker and author announced the news of her sexuality on Twitter on Thursday.

"Me to my parents today," wrote Ruby alongside a video of Diana Ross's song I'm Coming Out. "Feeling lucky and joyful and f r e e. over and Out."

History of Art and Philosophy student Ruby, who came under fire during 2013's edition of The Great British Bake Off for allegedly flirting with baking expert Paul Hollywood, said her news helped her hit back at those who criticised her while she was on the show.

"P.s. for those who thought I fancied Paul Hollywood to get ahead," she wrote. "Joke's on you, you massive misogynists."

Ruby announced the news of her sexuality on Thursday

After being inundated with messages of congratulations and admiration for her bravery, Ruby thanked her social media supporters.

"So grateful for all the positivity," she wrote. "It's so emboldening to those still mustering the courage to come out. A huge rainbow-coloured THANK YOU."

Among those sending Ruby their well wishes was her Guardian colleague and food critic Jay Rayner.

"@rubytandoh welcome to your world on your terms Ruby. Congrats," he wrote, to which Ruby replied: "Thank you Jay - it's a great feeling."

Blogger and campaigned Jack Monroe also tweeted Ruby, saying: "Happy out day sister. Huge love and congrats on your bravery x x."

Ruby was just 21 when she took part in the The Great British Bake Off

In October 2013 Paul Hollywood was forced to respond to claims that he was giving preferential treatment to semi-finalist and Ruby because of her looks.

Speaking to the Radio Times 49-year-old Paul fiercely denied the claims, saying that the former model was not his "type".

"Personally I think Kimberley's far prettier," he said, referring to one of Ruby's fellow finalists. "With all the love in the world, Ruby's not my type.

"But she's a great baker, one of the most talented bakers who has walked in that tent. My job is to judge what goes on the plate. Always has been, always will be."