In case you missed it, I was recently featured on the awesome new talk show, “Pickler and Ben” for their Holiday-Bake Off. Now if this wasn’t all exciting enough, the competition was not only judged by hosts, Kellie Pickler and Ben Aaron, but also by Food Network’s Duff Goldman and Nancy Fuller. The show has officially launched online on CMT so you can watch it whenever, wherever and as many times as you want- forever. It was an amazing experience and a ton of fun! And spoiler alert, it was wonderfully capped off by the exciting little fact that I won.
For those of you who just want to get right to watching here is the link to my episode online: WATCH SUGARED AND ICED ON PICKLER AND BEN You can login through CMT for a one day pass, or go through Xfinity and use your Facebook and Twitter to watch as many times as you can handle seeing me rap.
Now for the behind the scenes info.
When I got the email and call from the show, I was actually on vacation in Oregon and I thought they really just wanted cookies, so imagine my surprise when they said they had found my cookies online and wanted to know if I would send them a video to be on the show – that week! I had a really fun Skype with their team and waited patiently to hear whether or not my glowing personality and I had made the cut. I had pretty much given up hope when I got the call on Monday to fly out to Nashville, Tennessee on Wednesday night to film the show on Thursday! All I was told was that I would be making Christmas cookies and there would be a twist. I sent them my ingredient lists so everything would be there for me to make my pumpkin spice sugar cookies.
I made the journey and got there with just enough time to hop the hotel shuttle bus to some excellent BBQ (priorities) and then head to bed for the big day. Bright and early all of the contestents were taken to the studio to prep for the TV magic with awesome and super wonderful Pickler and Ben team.
As we got situated on the set, the producers and team went around reminding everyone to be lively and energetic and not be afraid to stand out or do something different. I honestly don’t know which of those statements possessed me to say, “well yes I have a baking rap, inspired by the musical Hamilton,” only moments before the cameras turned on. But I did and next thing you know I was rapping on TV.
I’ve gotten some questions about the rap so here goes, some things you should know:
- I did not prepare it for this show AT ALL. I wasn’t actually even planning or prepared to do it on the show. The gods of baking-themed raps apparently thought it needed to be heard by the world and gave me a shove.
- Yes, that does mean, that I just happened to have a Hamilton-inspired rap about Christmas cookies in my head, ready to be sung at a moments notice.
- I regularly change the words to songs that I like, to suit my mood/interests. I bake and listen to Hamilton daily, so this was bound to happen. #BattleofCookieton2017
- I have re-written nearly the entire “Battle of Yorktown” song to be about baking Christmas cookies. It does not end with this verse. #TheCodeWordisCookieDough
- My Christmas wish is that Lin Manuel Miranda will hear this song and rap with me. So if anyone can, you know, make that happen… 🙂
Then the baking happened. It all moved very fast and I decided to decorate a hand-painted snow globe. We were allowed to bring our own cookie cutter, so I chose one of my holiday favorites from Sweet Sugarbelle. I painted a tiny winter scene complete with Santa and his reindeer. The challenge ended up being a “Naughty” and “Nice” table with all sorts of ingredients that we had to choose from to incorporate on the cookies or plate. I used a couple different sprinkles from the “Nice” table for the snow and the glittering base. From the “Naught” table I chose dried lavender which I dusted on top of the cookies and dried flowers which I used sprinkled on the plate.
I presented to the judges which let me say what a strange experience it was – to bring your cookies up to two Food Network idols that I have watched for YEARS to have them judge my baking. Obviously super amazing, but also just extremely unreal. As was getting a 10/10 from the Ace of Cakes on my cookie design and 10/10 from the Farmhouse Ruler on taste. Both judges were incredibly kind and it was such an honor to bake for them, winning was as they say “icing on the cake” or cookie as the case may be. Another cherry on top, was the $1000 gift card to William Sonoma and the super cool trophy of course.
This show was a huge surprise, an amazing opportunity and so very much fun. It combined all of my favorite things in life and managed to make all of my Food Network and American Idol dreams come true in one fail swoop. I could not be anymore grateful for the experience.
I want to thank everyone involved in the show for finding me and having me and all of that, but I also want to thank all you wonderful people reading this and my amazing customers who order my cookies. This would not have happened without all of you!