Best Baker in America recap: Summer treats are simply delightful


Summer treats highlight this Best Baker in America episode recap. Will summer treats bring the heat or offer cool refreshment?

This week’s Best Baker in America episode recap focused on summer desserts. While this topic can be quite broad, the two challenges showcased a classic dessert and a modern approach to plated desserts. Some bakers continue to excel while others may be reaching the end of their competition. Which desserts epitomized summer?

For this week’s Skills Challenge, the bakers had to create a strawberry shortcake dessert. This dessert needed to have biscuits, cream and strawberries. Some bakers chose a traditional approach while a few desserts were more modern.

In this challenge, the biscuit was key. If the biscuit was a disaster, the dessert was a failure. A delicious biscuit needs to be flakey and full of flavor. If the dough is overworked, the biscuit will be too heavy, dense and a definitely disaster. As Jason Smith said, an overworked dough creates a biscuit that you can’t even get the hog to eat. Luckily, a few biscuits impressed the judges.

Host Scott Conant with Judges Marcela Valladolid and Jason Smith during the Skills Challenge, Strawberry Shortcake, during the Summer Desserts episode, as seen on Best Baker in America, Season 2. photo provided by Food Network

Lasheeda had one of the best biscuits of the day. The biscuit was flakey, sugary and definitely a winner. Also, her dessert was smart. Strawberries were used in many ways. By compressing the strawberries, the flavor intensified and added a big punch of flavor.

One interesting aspect to this challenge was that many of the desserts incorporated lemon curd with the strawberry shortcake. The tart, bright curd is a lovely contrast to the sweet strawberries and the flakey biscuits.

This flavor combination is something that the home baker should try this summer. Lemon curd doesn’t have to be just used with scones. The combination with the strawberry shortcake is quite lovely for summer. If you don’t like lemon curd, try some bright, acidic flavor to offset the dessert’s sweetness. Just like savory cooking, balance in baking is key.

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Winning the Skills Challenge was Lasheeda. After being in the bottom a couple of times, it was refreshing to see her win. But, winning a Skill Challenge doesn’t give a baker a free pass to the next episode. This competition is fierce and mistakes can get bakers sent home.

The Master Challenge had the bakers take on a classic dichotomy, fire and ice. This challenge had the bakers create a plated dessert that had a bruleed element (fire) and an ice element (frozen). Also, the dessert must incorporate mint.

This challenge was much more difficult than it seems. To do a fully composed plated dessert in two hours is quite difficult. Plated desserts have multiple elements and are quite refined. These bakers should be applauded on their ability to create a visually stunning and delicious plated dessert given these restraints.

Throughout Best Baker in America Season 2, Adam has made beautifully intricate plated dessert. This week he didn’t disappoint. His dessert was stunning. The crème brulee was perfection and it paired well with his ice element. The combination of mint and lime was simple sublime.

Judges Sherry Yard, Jason Smith, and Marcela Valladolid with Host Scott Conant as Contestant Max Santiago presents his dish Mango Mojito with Mango Creme BržlŽe, Mint Foam, and Cucumber Lime Mint Sorbet during judging of the Master Challenge, Fire and Ice Desserts, during the Summer Desserts episode, as seen on Best Baker in America, Season 2. photo provided by Food Network

Another top baker was Becca. Her plate was pretty yet playful. The best element was her pistachio cake that was made in the microwave. While some microwave cakes can have an unpleasant texture, hers was quite delicious. I wonder if her cake texture was so good because she used a foamer to add air to the cake. Maybe the Food Network will share her secret tip.

The winning baker on this week’s Best Baker in America recap was Adam. His dessert excelled in all the requirements. So far, Adam has been doing well. He should go far in this competition.

The bottom bakers were Jeremy and Leigh. I disagree with these two choices. Lasheeda, although he did well in the Skills Challenge, had a bad plated dessert. Her burnt meringue wasn’t a good visual and her frozen element was a mess. I guess that winning the Skills Challenge gave her a pass.

Jeremy had some technical issues with his dessert. The crust was terribly under-baked. It was a bad day in the kitchen for him. Anyone can have an off day. Unfortunately, his bad day came during a competition. Also, his blueberry flavors overpowered the mint. He had a few mis-steps.

I disagree with Leigh being in the bottom. While I didn’t like the mint julep splatter, the rest of the dessert sounded good. While mint flavor was missing, her dessert didn’t have a technical flaw.

The baker sent home on this week’s Best Baker in America episode was Jeremy. His technical mistake with the crust was too much overlook. It was just a bad day for Jeremy.

One of the highlights of this Best Baker in America episode was that Jason said some hilarious phrases. In this episode, fans got to see that vivacious personality that we enjoy. His Southern charm is part of the reason that so many fans watch this show. Hopefully, this trend will continue throughout the season.

Also, has anyone noticed all the close-up eating shots in this episode? The beauty food shots are great, but I don’t necessarily need to see the judges putting food in their mouth. It would be nice to see some of those shots fade away.

Next: Best Baker in America: Wedding cakes

Did this week’s Best Baker in America episode recap get you craving some summer treats? While the home baker may not be making those intricate plated desserts, I am willing to bet that someone will be eating strawberry shortcake this summer.

Are you enjoying Best Baker in America Season 2? Who do you think will walk away with the title?