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Food Network Star: Interview With Eliminated Chef Mary Beth Albright

August 08, 2011 04:48 PM by Megan Thompson

Mary Beth Albright made it to the final four on Food Network Star, but her time at the Food Network ended last night.  Keep reading to find out the inside scoop of her experience on the show and what’s next for this talented gal!  

What happened with your overcooked lamb chops last night?

Well, okay I roasted the chops individually.  I usually roast the entire rack of lamb, but I was worried I wouldn’t have enough time. You hear you have an hour on Iron Chef and then you’re running around and you look up at the clock and fifteen minutes have gone by.  I probably took them out at the right time, and then while you’re judging you have to keep your food warm.  I miscalculated how long it would take to keep it warm.   You see that one shot of Giada de Laurentiis trying to saw through her lamb chop and you’re like, Oh God! 

What’s harder facing the judges of the Food Network panel or facing the judge in the courtroom?

(Laughing) Oh wow!  They don’t allow cameras in courtrooms anymore!  It’s tough not only being in front of the Food Network judges because of the cameras, but you are being evaluated on your dreams.  And that is a tough thing to handle.  Because when you left a really good profession, making really good money, to follow a passion it hurts a lot for someone to be critical.  They have to be critical, I get that. It is really hard to be judged on your dream.

If you had a chance to do the show over again, what would you do differently?

The short answer is, more than anything my downfall was not being afraid. I thought a lot about this.  When you look at that duck episode, I made a great duck – the problem was I spent so much energy to how it was going to work out. I didn’t bring energy to my presentation.  When things get crazy you have to open up, not shut down! 

What has surprised you the most from being on the show?

I returned home very changed. This is a personal journey. I really did change a lot as a person.  I thought of it as cooking fantasy camp, but it’s much more than that.  The judges are trying to figure out who has it in them to do the job.  It’s a big job – on some level if you were ready to the job you would already be doing it.  Everyone enters this competition with faults and the challenge is to recognize them and to address them while remaining true to who you are – and that’s a personal journey.

Who left in the competition do you think is the next Food Network Star?

I have the worst answer for this, I really think all three could do the job!  Everybody has really strong strengths. Jeff is a really strong performer and makes really good food.  Susie has the soul of a Mexican chef, she has such deep history with the food it makes me want to make it.  And I love Vic, he is so endearing in person and he takes risks with food.

What was the most intimidating challenge for you?

There is nothing more intimidating than Iron Chef.  I was expected to make food of Iron Chef quality.  To see your picture there – it’s a six foot tall picture of yourself on the wall!

How was it meeting Michael Symon from Iron Chef?

I didn’t know how endearing he would be!  Him and Vic look like they were separated at birth! I love Michael Symon!  He at the same time is very critical and very kind, and that is a difficult line to walk. I’m a big fan.

What’s next for you?

I was looking at my calendar and I’m the “plus one” with my three-year-old son for the next couple of weeks.  I’m still writing and I would love to work with Food Network in some capacity.  I’m hoping to be the Jennifer Hudson of Food Network Star season 7!

It was great to see Mary Beth follow her dreams on the show!  Keep reaching for the culinary stars Mary
Beth!

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Photo Credit: Food Network

Topics: Food Network Reality TV Shows, The Next Food Network Star |

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