Review: Sweet Genius

Food Network’s newest spin on dessert competitions is called Sweet Genius.  One Food Network fan left a message on the Network’s official Facebook page describing it thusly, “Sweet genius = chopped + iron chef + sugar.”

Sweet GeniusHere’s the Network’s description, “Competition is sweet but by all means intense as four pastry chefs face off each week in unique dessert challenges. Whoever impresses Ron Ben-Israel — the Sweet Genius himself — takes home $10,000.”

Contestants are given some ingredients that belong in dessert and some that don’t.  That’s a tired gimmick and was never a good one.  The twist is that host Ron Ben-Isreal also gives them an “inspiration” like sand.  That’s different – stupid, but different.

As I have pointed out before I’m not a dessert kind of guy.  My idea of the perfect dessert is a second cheeseburger.  If you are a fan of dessert contests you will probably like it.  In essence dessert contests are all the same with the resulting dishes pretty much tasting the same.  Will it be a hit?  It will do well enough.  Desserts contest fans are cultish in their devotion to the genre.  They love their shows and apparently there are enough of them for networks to keep churning out these cookie cutter programs.  Sorry, had to do it.

I didn’t like it.  At all.  Not even a little.  It was better than Cupcake Wars.  Barely.

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Stuart in 80 Words or Less
Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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Stuart’s Honors & Awards
2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
2015 4th Place Downtown Cajun Cook-off
2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
2011 Judge: 29th Chef's of the Coast Cook-off
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
2011 Culinary Hall of Fame Member
2010 Tasty Awards Judge
2010 Judge: Bayou La Batre Gumbo Cook-off
2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Award Nominee
2010 Chef2Chef Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2010 Denay's Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2009 2nd Place Bay Area Food Bank Chef Challenge
2008 Tava: Discovery Contest Runner-up
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