The Food Network show Holiday Baking Championship just kicked off its fourth season. It features eight amateur bakers and is hosted by Jesse Palmer. The contestants have the sole aim of presenting holiday treats handed down through generations.
It’s a competition, so needless to say, everyone is basically at peak performance. With each week’s episode featuring a tougher challenge, it’s definitely a show to look out for. In that vein, here are five things that you didn’t know about the show.
1. The Host Isn’t A Chef
This may come as a surprise, but Jesse Palmer, the host of Holiday Baking Championship, isn’t a professional chef himself. However, he’s well known for a bunch of other career achievements. Palmer was a quarterback for the NFL’s New York Giants as well as the San Francisco 49ers for five years.
When his NFL career ended, he became a game analyst for ESPN and Fox Sports Net. He also worked as a newscaster for Good Morning America, where he focused on live events and the news of the day. This is Palmer’s first season hosting the show, and he replaced host Bobby Deen who did the honors for the first three seasons.
2. All The Judges Are Pro Chefs
While the new host isn’t a fixture in the culinary world, the judges are deep in there. Some of them include professional baker Duff Goldman from the Food Network show Ace of Cakes. Then there’s Lorraine Pascale, who began her professional career as a model but found her calling as a culinary genius. The list also includes pastry chef Nancy Fuller, who hosts the Food Network show Farmhouse Rules. No doubt, the amateur chefs have their work cut out for them.
3. There’s A Huge Surprise Factor In Store For The Contestants
Here’s how the show works; each episode comprises two competition rounds for the bakers. The preliminary round kicks off with holiday-themed pastries. Whoever wins that round is given a special advantage, but there’s an air of mystery around it, as no one is told that in advance. The big reveal comes after they’re briefed on what to do in the second round. It usually ranges from help from a guest baker to being allowed to swap out required ingredients.
4. The Competition Gets Tougher With Each Round
It wouldn’t be a great competition show if things didn’t get more dicey as the contestants advanced. So, naturally, the second round gets more difficult in some way. Contestants are either required to make something big or something plentiful within the holiday theme. However, to keep contestants on their toes, creators often toss in an unexpected requirement to make the task even more difficult.
5. The Holiday Baking Championship Has Multiple Spinoffs
The Food Network is famous for creating spinoffs of popular shows. When it comes to baking, there are so many different directions a show can be taken. In addition to Holiday Baking Championship, there’s also Halloween Baking Championship, Spring Baking Championship, and Kids Baking Championship. The Holiday Baking Championship is in its fourth season and runs from November through the latter part of December to cover Thanksgiving and Christmas themes.
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