November 28, 2011 08:33 PM by Lisa Princ
Next Great Baker kicked off their season two premiere with an introduction to this season’s contestants who would be fighting for $100,000, a four-page feature in Brides Magazine, and a chance to work with Buddy and his team at Carlo’s Bakery. For the full list of contestants, click here, or check out TLC’s Next Great Baker page.
For their first challenge, the contestants were asked to make the best, whatever that may be! Buddy informed them that they would have 2 hours to create their very best dessert, aka their signature cake. Sara, from Georgia, let us know how much she loves to use alcohol in her baking, as she was making a beer cheesecake that she was certain would be the best. Meanwhile, Megan Hart, a former paramedic, was struggling with her raspberry cupcakes – they didn’t taste quite right, but she couldn’t figure out why.
Before we knew it, Buddy was back, with his brother in law, Mauro, who was helping him judge the challenge. Not all the contestants got the praise that they were looking for though. Megan’s worst nightmare came true when Buddy told her that her raspberry tasted like cough medicine, while Tony could not grasp that coffee and strawberries do not mix in his mother’s moon pie recipe. Buddy was flabbergasted to learn that Wesley used a boxed cake mix for his Rum cake, and he refused to even comment on the cake.
When it came time for results, Buddy revealed that the bottom two in the challenge were Megan – not surprisingly, along with Minerva, who had a carrot cake with an awful texture. Buddy told the two girls that Wesley, who used a boxed cake mix, tasted better than theirs. In the top this week were Carmelo, and the winner of the challenge was 20-year-old-Jasmine, who wowed the judges with her red velvet cake.
For the elimination challenge, the bakers would be creating theme cakes, in teams. They each chose a theme out of a cannoli, which determined their teams. After the teams were finished, Buddy asked Jasmine which team she wanted to be on, as that was her advantage for winning the last challenge. Jasmine chose to be on Carmelo’s team, who were creating a Fairytale cake, simply because she felt he was a good baker, and that they could take the win. For this challenge, the teams were to create a 4 foot tall cake!
Ryan was having a tough time dealing with the two girls on his team – Marissa and Nadine, who thought they knew what the Ultimate Man cake would consist of, but Ryan was out to show them otherwise. After debating it, the team decided to go with a toolbox cake, but Ryan was annoyed with Nadine’s lack of ambition. Meanwhile, Carmelo worried about Minerva, who lost the last challenge, but the rest of the team seemed to mesh well. Megan and Wesley, who were working with Heather for an under the sea cake, were not pleased with Heather’s bossiness.
With three hours left in the eight hour challenge, Buddy Valastro threw a wrench in the contestants’ plans, as he took everyone into the freezer, and announced another challenge. This time, it would be an endurance challenge – whoever could stay in the freezer the longest would win immunity and a team surprise. However, the Buddy was restarting the clock, so whoever stayed in the freezer was losing precious time. Marissa, Wesley, and Tony were not about to leave the freezer, but eventually Marissa cracked claiming that her team needed her.
With only Wesley and Tony in the freezer, neither of them was about to let the other win. After Buddy decided to up the ante and take their jackets away, they decided to call Buddy back in. When Buddy came back into the freezer, Tony and Wesley asked him if they could split the prize, and Buddy agreed. Wesley would be taking the immunity, while Tony would take the team prize. The team prize was season one winner, Dana Herbert, who would join Tony’s team and help them with their Fashionista cake for one hour.
When the cakes were complete, the next task would be to transport them to Carlos Bakery for judging, but would they make it? All of the cakes were still standing when the trucks arrived, but as Tony’s team began to remove their Fashionista cake, it fell apart, with a portion of the cake smashing on the ground – tragic! Buddy then announced that all his customers, who were crowded outside the bakery would be helping him the judge the cakes, by leaving tickets in buckets by the cakes. Carmelo’s team with the Fairytale cake, along with Heather’s team and their Under The Sea cake were the top cakes tonight.
The winner of the challenge was revealed to be the Fairytale cake, but Buddy also told Heather, Megan and Wesley that their Under The Sea cake was his favorite and they were safe as well. That meant that Tony, Heather M., and Sara were up for elimination with their Fashionista cake, along with Ryan, Marissa and Nadine, with their Ultimate Man’s cake. Buddy criticized Ryan’s team for doing a toolbox cake, as he did not feel that was the ultimate man’s cake, but he also told them they were safe. In the end it was Sara, who Buddy felt that would not be the Next Great Baker, and she was sent packing.
Be sure to check out TLC’s official Next Great Baker site for more information on the season two contestants, and videos. This season promises to full of fun, drama, and of course, cake! Tune in next week to TLC at 9 pm for a brand new episode of Next Great Baker, and visit us after the show for a full recap, and to share your comments with us!
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Photos courtesy of TLC