1

This is a rather straightforward question. I have the following line said by person H to person G.

H: みんなが来るって聞いてたからお菓子焼いてたんだ~ 絶賛仕上げ中{ちゅう}

It's an answer to unvoiced question of G to H about what M is doing since M was not able to come and greet G and friends as they were entering the home.

The first bit is rather easy and should mean the following:

Since we heard everyone will be coming, we’ve been making sweets/candy.

The second bit I think means something like this:

She is putting finishing touches right now.

since 仕上げ is finishing touches and 中{ちゅう} probably indicates that M is right now in the process of doing the finishing touches.

What I wonder is what purpose does 絶賛 serve here. It's supposedly means high praise. But I for the love of me can't figure out what it would be doing in a sentence like this.

3

This is a wordplay on 絶賛販売中, a set phrase used in the same way as "Now on sale" or "In store now". 絶賛 literally means "highly praised" or "great review", but marketers add this word routinely even when the item is not particularly popular. 好評発売中 is similar.

In this case, 絶賛~中 is rather straightforwardly used to incite a sense of expectancy. Sometimes this phrase is jokingly used even with something bad, for example 絶賛残業中 or 絶賛失業中. See: Help with the meaning of 大絶賛 in this sentence

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