Monday, July 18, 2011

About That Recipe Contest....I Won!

Perfect 3 Host, Kelsey Nixon, and Me on Set
You might remember some rumblings from me a couple of months back about a recipe contest I had entered--and more than a couple of solicitations for votes.  Well the day, the hour, has finally come when I can share what has felt like the biggest secret for the last while:  I won the Cooking Channel's Perfect 3 Recipe Contest!  The contest was divided into thirteen categories, each of which produced a winning recipe.  My category of choice was tacos--and my recipe for Grilled Steak Tacos with Chipotle Cream and Chimichurri was the ultimate winner. 

The winning dish

You can likely imagine the sheer thrill I experienced upon receiving the news.  I was so honored and excited and couldn't wait to spread the news far and wide, but it would be a while yet (now to be exact) until I was able to scream my delight into the blog and social media sphere.  My competition had included the likes of professional, seasoned chefs and food authorities, so this was no small feat in my eyes.  And I know that the support of the many who took the time to vote for me/my recipe in the final days of the competition surely played a part in my win.  So to you--each and every one of you--I say THANK YOU!!  Your support has meant so much to me, truly.

If you'll indulge me, I'll give a bit of background on the contest, before I came knocking for votes.  It all started with me entering my recipe into the contest.  A few weeks or so later, I received a notice that my recipe had been selected as a finalist.  There were three of us, however, so more work remained.  I then had to create and submit a short video of me demonstrating my recipe.  Once my video was done and submitted, I then realized I needed to solicit some votes!  So I hit my loyal networks and asked for support--which I obviously got.  In the end, everything came together to make mine the winning recipe.  Glory to God!

Now onto the prize...(my favorite part!)

The grand prize for each winner was to be flown to NYC to film a webisode of our recipe at the Food Network/Cooking Channel studios with Kelsey Nixon, the host of the soon-to-premier The Perfect 3 Cooking Channel television series.  Can you say, Awe-mazing?!  If you asked me what my dream prize would be, I couldn't have planned it any better.  NYC, Food Network/Cooking Channel and me.  It doesn't get any better!  And the Cooking Channel team made it the dream experience I was expecting.  From the time I arrived in NYC--car awaiting at the airport of course :)--until I returned home three days later, it was one of the grandest, most special experiences I have ever had the privilege of enjoying.

My three day, expense-paid trip included a stay in the fabulous Meat Packing District--home to Chelsea Market--which is home to the Food Network/Cooking Channel.  Sweet, huh?

My shoot was perfectly arranged for late afternoon of Day 2 of my visit.  I arrived to the studios and took that step I had always wanted to take--into the doors of the Food Network studios.  After being greeted by my guide and right-hand woman so-to-speak, I was given the privilege of touring the studio, including a stop by the Food Network kitchens, themselves, where chefs were making my recipe in preparation for my shoot!  Check out some photo highlights from that grand day below.
Home of the Food Network/Cooking Channel
The Next Food Network/Cooking Channel Star...
Those kitchens!
Meeting the chefs who were preparing my recipe; we're holding the marinated steak!
One Happy Girl!
After my tour, I was escorted to the green room where I had finishing touches done by the resident make-up artist and waited for a bit while the pie category winner wrapped her shoot. was showtime!  I was mic-ed up (and down, frankly) and entered the set where I met Kelsey and the team on-hand who were directing our shoot.  Kelsey was the best.  She was so warm and friendly, so I was able to relax and feel at home during the shoot.  And I even had my own "kitchen genies" who would come and replace food or clean-up items, etc., on cue.  (Now if I can just find a way to duplicate that at home.)  It was a fun shoot, that I'll never forget, and I'm so excited to see--and to have you see--the final version once it's published online.  I also can't wait to see all the other winning recipe webisodes.

After the shoot, I grabbed an ice cream cone and took a stroll at the beautiful High Line Park to watch the sunset and take it all in.

So I'll keep you posted on when it's finally available to watch.  Late summer is my likely guess.  But, I'll let you know, don't worry.  In the interim, you can check out The Perfect 3 television series for yummy inspiration.

Finally, you have to make the recipe and let me know what you think.  P.S. If you love steak and bold, delicious flavors, you'll LOVE these tacos!

I think success is sweetest when shared, so thank you for allowing me to share this very special honor with you.

Happy Eating!


  1. Congratulations! A beautiful success for a beautiful lady!

  2. That is GREAT news Dawn!!! Congrats!!!Now, you have to invite me over so that I can eat this yummy dish! A viewing party perhaps?

  3. Thanks so much, everyone!!

  4. AnonymousJuly 18, 2011

    Sooooo SUPER proud of you Dawn! It makes me absolutely giddy to see people following their dreams. Love it! Congratulations, girl! Let us know when you sign that deal for your own show! I do believe it's coming!

  5. Oh my goodness! How exciting!!! Congratulations Dawn ... I can't wait to see it.

  6. AnonymousJuly 19, 2011

    As always, I am so proud of you! You are my special, special!! Congratulations.


  7. This is awesome! What a dream come true for someone in the culinary field! Food Network? *faints* So glad I found you via twitter. Please make sure you tell us when your show airs.

  8. Congrations!!! What an awesome accomplishment, exciting, fun, and cooking. I love baking. I am so proud of you!

  9. Congratulations! That is truly awesome and so neat for a foodie! Do keep us posted on when we can see it.


    1. Thank you, Lyn! You can view it anytime on my Videos page here on the blog.


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