A baker in Central New York is pursuing her dream on the new Food Network show
A woman from Central New York is ready to make her dream come true on a new show on the Food Network.
Ally Radziewicz will be a contestant on “Summer Baking Championship” hosted by “The Bachelor” star Jesse Palmer on Food Network and Discovery+. You’ll be one of ten bakers who tackle summer-themed baking challenges for a chance to win the $25,000 grand prize and the official title of Summer Baking Champion.
Radziewicz, a 2011 graduate of Jamesville-DeWitt High School, is a French-trained professional baker who runs her own small business, The Love Bean, in her home in Pompeii, NY On Instagram (@the_lovebean), she frequently shares photos of delicious-looking cakes and cupcakes cookies, macaroons, and other custom-made desserts for birthdays, weddings, and other special occasions.
In the “Summer Baking Championships,” though, she’ll compete to impress judges Duff Goldman, Carla Hall, and Damaris Phillips. The Food Network has several “Baking Championship” series, but this new show requires contestants to use the flavors, ingredients, and celebrations of the summer season.
“I was excited when I learned it was summer (themed),” Radziewicz told syracuse.com | Subsequent standard. “I love everything summer. I love summer baked goods and the seasonal ingredients you bring in so I was excited. … I was going to be nervous but I think summer just made it a little cooler, which was nice.”
One of the show’s first competitions required contestants to make cupcakes that looked like pool floats. She was ready for the challenge.
It makes sense, she said. “The inner tube is already like a donut. But it’s like when you get into such stressful situations…your mind just goes, like, ‘What’s going on?’…and you have to think really fast.”
Other challenges will include making a cake with a gelatin water feature, pink confetti in honor of the new “Barbie” movie, a two-tiered cake that looks like a 4th of July parade, and elevated versions of summer classics like ice cream sandwiches, s’mores pies and cobbler and cream.
Radziewicz said she was approached to be a contestant by the show’s producers through her Instagram page, which led to multiple interviews prior to her selection. She then flew to Los Angeles to compete, and often pressured herself to make sure she wasn’t dreaming.
“I was like, ‘Oh my God, this is real. ‘ Here I am,” she recalls.
Radziewicz felt pressure from the cameras and judges, but was comfortable with the other bakers.
“My other fellow competitors are like the greatest people ever and we still have team scripts and we all talk and everything,” she said. “So it’s fun. I think it’s just a unique situation that I’ve never cooked in before, where I was like, ‘Oh my God, don’t get it wrong.'”
Radziewicz is one of two contestants from upstate New York on the show — the other is Enrica Martin of Kingston, New York. Radziewicz, who married last fall, has also lived in Scotland, Rhode Island, and Brooklyn, but proudly calls CNY her home.
“I think we have a lot of great local produce here,” said Radziewicz, who grows some of her own herbs and grows flowers at home. “I always find myself at the regional farmers market in CNY…the fresh produce we use here, I think that’s the essence of Syracuse.”
Radziewicz says that if she wins, she will use the money to open her own brick-and-mortar bakery in the Syracuse area. She trained at the Culinary Institute of America and currently works as a pastry chef at Onondaga Golf & Country Club in Fayetteville, but would like to invest in The Love Bean.
“Everything is custom-made cakes, cupcakes and cookies,” she said. “I think macarons are one of my favorite items that everyone is like, ‘I need your macarons. I need them yesterday. … So I’ve always dreamed of having my own cake studio where I can cater to all these different events.”
“Summer Baking Championship” premieres Monday, May 15th at 9 PM ET with two back-to-back episodes on the Food Network. Episodes will also be available to stream on Discover + Stream.
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