'NFNS Season 5' on Serious Eats

'The Next Food Network Star' Runner-Up Jeffrey Saad Gets His Own Show Too, Sorta

Earlier this month, The Next Food Network Star season five finale shocked some people when Bel-Air real estate agent Jeffrey Saad lost to stay-at-home Texas mom (and almost eerily Sandra Lee-reminiscent) Melissa d'Arabian. But based on the fourth season's results (when runner-up Adam Gertler landed a show in addition to the actual winner Aaron "Big Daddy" McCargo, Jr.) it's no big shocker that Saad wound up with his own little show himself. The Spice Smuggler is just online—at least for now. The name was clearly a riff on the The Ingredient Smuggler, Saad's pilot for his hopeful show in TNFNS's final episode. (Food Network was not going to let the opportunity to use smuggler slip!) In each of the... More

Watch It with Us: 'The Next Food Network Star' Season 5 Finale

If you're planning to watch tonight's episode of The Next Food Network Star, join us here in the comments at 9 p.m. ET. It'll be an open thread—jump in with your comments, observations, or play-by-play as the episode unfolds. This week it's down to the two finalists: Jeffrey and Melissa. According to judge Susie Fogelson, this was the toughest decision of all five seasons. Who do you think will be eliminated? And who deserves a show on the Food Network?... More

Watch It with Us: 'The Next Food Network Star,' Episode 8

If you're planning on watching tonight's episode of The Next Food Network Star, join us here in the comments at 9 p.m. ET. It'll be an open thread—jump in with your comments, observations, or play-by-play as the episode unfolds. This week the three finalists have to come up with a three-course menu for "a group of culinary elite" inspired by the upcoming movie Julie & Julia. Who do you think will be eliminated?... More

Watch It with Us: 'The Next Food Network Star,' Episode 7

If you're planning on watching tonight's episode of The Next Food Network Star, join us here in the comments at 9 p.m. ET. It'll be an open thread—jump in with your comments, observations, or play-by-play as the episode unfolds. This week the four remaining contestants must survive live demos and a beachside seafood challenge. Sounds like trouble: who do you think will survive?... More

Watch It with Us: 'The Next Food Network Star,' Episode 5

We're going to try something a little different this week. If you're planning on watching tonight's episode of The Next Food Network Star, join us here in the comments at 9 p.m. ET. It'll be an open thread—jump in with your comments, observations, or play-by-play as the episode unfolds. This week things get real with Rachael Ray: who do you think will be going home?... More

'The Next Food Network Star' Week 3

In this week's episode of The Next Food Network Star, the remaining contestants faced two dinner party challenges. The first was to shop for a party of twelve on a $60 budget. The second was to get into groups of two and serve Ina Garten and eleven others dinner made with those ingredients. In true reality show fashion, there were more than a few meltdowns. [Warning, spoilers ahead]... More

'The Next Food Network Star' Season 5 Premiere

The fifth season of The Next Food Network Star premiered tonight with ten mostly amateur chefs all competing for a television show slot on Food Network. It was a little tough to judge who we'd grow to love and who'd make us cringe, but there were some definite favorites (cough, Michael). The contestants were thrown into a house Real World-style, but there was no time for hot tub introductions. The gang was immediately split up into two teams at Butter restaurant in Manhattan, cooking for 75 guests at Food Network's Sweet Sixteen bash. The invite list mostly included food hotshots (Giada de Laurentiis, Bobby Flay, Iron Chef Morimoto) and for some reason, Nancy O'Dell from Access Hollywood. After the... More

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