Food Network Star-Season 12, Episode Aired 7/10/16-Surprise Contender Sent Home. Down to Top Four.

The Food Network Star contender sent home on the episode aired 7/10/16 was quite a surprise. At least to this viewer. Least personality contender remained, best personality contender, sent home. That's my take.

Official Food Network Site HERE.

It was down to five contenders on the Next Food Network Star aired on 7/10/16.

The first challenge involved taking a classic American dish and putting the contender's own spin on it.

This is often a challenge on these sorts of shows, from cooking competitions to singing contests. "Put your own spin on it," is the mantra which means, well who knows?

food7.12.16elim1In the case of this cooking challenge, contender Jenard created a classic steak and cheese sandwich only he deep fried the bread holding the meat!

Plop, right down in the grease and wow, I was shocked. The judges liked the dish but thought it too greasy. You think?

Erin made something with a hot dog. Erin's food of choice, owning a bakery and everything, is not hot dogs, please understand.

food7.12.16intro1Ana, the contender with zero personality as I see it, created lobster rolls but I could swear she said she added blood orange to the mix.food7.12.13intro2


Damiano, the beloved and cute Italian, forgot the ingredients in his creation but never mind, the judges loved it.food7.12.16intro3

Tregaye made some kind of meat and rice ball and while the title and ingredients aren't exotic, the judges like it and Tregaye ended up winning that challenge.

Trisha Yearwood was a guest to help the judges test the elimination challenge, which consisted of the remaining contenders to prepare a full meal consisting of an appetizer, pasta, seafood, main course and, of course, dkessert.

food7.12.16elim1Jenard came up with the main course, a tenderloin with gorgonzola cheese.food7.12.16elim3

Tregaye created the seafood course, some fried scallops. Ana created an appetizer she calls "pork three ways"-a Cuban concoction. Damiano had the pasta dish and he did something with squid ink that I would never eat. Finally Erin did the dessert of course.

Well I thought Erin's chocolate chip cookies looked good but, alas, a baker would have done a much better job. Erin's cookies included lots of expensive chocolate and a topping of raspberry gelato.

In both of these cooking challenges the contenders had to do a presentation to introduce their creations. In both cases Tregaye did a great job. She won the first challenge and for the elimination challenge she ties with Damiano for the best food and presentation.

food7.12.16elim4Erin, alas, was sent home. To my surprise.food7.12.16elim5

Now I don't think Erin was going to win this as for no other reason she was a specialist in desserts and how many dessert shows can Food Network have?

Ana is a cook that the judges like but her personality really sucks.

Damiano probably won't win as….he's just not someone I would watch in a cooking show.

It will probably come down to either Jenard or Tregaye.

I'm going with Tregaye in that she has a wide variety of cooking styles, a pleasant, if sometimes goofy, personality. And I don't think Food Network has a black female cooking star and they do have a black male one.

Don't tell me it shouldn't matter. Food Network succeeds because it has a wide and diversified variety of cooks.

And this annual show, The Next Food Network Star, is there just to flesh out their cook and show variety.

It's my story and I'm sticking to it.

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