Contestants Aaron Clouse, Brian Bosch, Edward Cunningham, Holly Braddock, Michael Gaddy, Michelle Lee, Nerwan Khalife, Renee Loranger, Sinai Vespie, Tamara Brown, as seen on Halloween Baking Championship, Season 6.
With four finale bakers ready to conjure up a Food Network win, only one person would emerge from the fog and be crowned the Halloween Baking Championship Season 8 winner. After a Food Network season filled with creepy challenges, the final two bakes were less ghoulish. While the visual will always get people to turn their head, it is the flavor that will always steal the show. Cake Board Square
Broken into two challenges, the Thriller Challenge asked the bakers to love, honor and buffet. The grazing boards featured cheese forward savory and sweet items. Given that the board trend will never die, this challenge could inspire some other home bakers to serve these ideas up on a platter.
For this Thriller Challenge, the final four would be cut down to just three. The pressure was on, and the phrase cut the cheese has a new meaning. Getting so close to the title and being eliminated could be the biggest horror of them all.
The bakers’ cheesy treats were so good that judges @carlahall, @zacayoung + @steph__boswell have decided to allow ALL of them to compete in the final round 💯🙌 #HalloweenBakingChampionship pic.twitter.com/i3uoYKh9zN
— Food Network (@FoodNetwork) November 1, 2022
Bringing together sweet and savory cheese forward dishes is not necessarily too difficult. Although there were a few mis-steps along the way, the grazing boards were successful. From scones to quiches to cheesecakes to packzi, the desserts were worthy of celebrating the undead couple.
The top bakers for the Thriller Challenge were Zac and Jill. The judges appreciated Zac’s quiche, especially with the caramelized cheddar. The flavors were on point. Even his whoopie pie with the cheddar and dark cocoa was impressive.
Jill wowed with her goat cheese scones, but they needed more garnish. In addition, the packzi dough was on point. It was the perfect little bite.
While Zac won the challenge, Jill placed second. Unfortunately, Lauren and Blayre were in the bottom.
Blayre had good visuals and flavors delivered. It was overall good, but nothing that was a huge wow factor.
Lauren had nice wedding-like appearance to her board, but the flavors, especially the ricotta cheesecake, impressed the judges. The creamy texture earned high praise.
Although one baker was going to be eliminated, all four bakers moved into the Halloween Baking Championship Season 8 finale Killer Challenge. Each baker had to create a black wedding cake. There was no advantage and the bakers had five hours to complete the last sweet creation.
For the final challenge, the bakers had to make multi-tier black wedding cakes. While the bakers could choose any flavor they wanted, the themes were randomly chosen. From antique to gothic, the darker themes were elaborate even though the color scheme was dark.
Which wedding cake was the most impressive? Only one baker’s dessert is worthy of the win! #HalloweenBakingChampionship pic.twitter.com/phAtLj4jO9
— Food Network (@FoodNetwork) November 1, 2022
Overall, the bakers created stunning pieces. Given that Zac was not happy about his theme, it was somewhat clear that his design was a little blah. It was rushed and needed to be more intricate. In contrast, the inside of his cake was amazing. The judges wished that the two elements were in better harmony.
With Lauren’s cake, the visual was impeccable. From the harlequin design to the masquerade masks, the look impressed. Unfortunately, the cake was not quite as perfect. Even though she re-baked, the crumb was more like a cornbread than a moist cake.
Jill captured the elements from the Roaring 20s, but the cake did hit a few clunkers. The crunchy cereal pieces were not appealing. In contrast, the judges swooned over her chocolate cake. It was the winner of the cakes.
Lastly, Blayre combined a great visual with the best flavor of the night. The visual guided the eye and was clearly a tier above the rest. More importantly, the judges gushed over her brown butter cream cheese frosting. That single component was the highlight of the night.
After almost being eliminated in the Thriller Challenge, Blayre was crowned the Halloween Baking Championship Season 8 winner. Her macabre masterpiece was one of the best offerings in the Food Network show’s history.
Now that Halloween has been put to bed, it is time to get ready for some Holiday Baking Championship sweet dreams. What will the elves create in the Food Network kitchen?
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