Perfectly Baking the Imperfect Cake


Baking’s not as easy as it seems. You see a fancy patissier create a dazzling three-layered cake with the snap of a finger, follow the exact same recipe, and end up with something completely different. Well, if you’re an amateur baker but an expert cake-eater like I am, here’s the perfect show for you:

Nailed It! is a baking competition show where contestants try to recreate the desserts of famous patissiers for a $10,000 prize. However, these contestants are amateur bakers with very little experience, just like us! In each episode, there are three new contestants who participate in two rounds of baking. In the first round, they recreate a small dessert, such as a cupcake or a cake pop. The winner of this round gets to wear a golden chef’s hat when they move on to the next round, where they have to bake a complex three-layered cake from scratch. 

During the two-hour baking time, contestants are given a “panic” button, which allows them to receive three-minutes assistance from one of the judges. However, there is only one chance for the panic button, so contestants must use it wisely when they feel totally stuck. The winner of the first round receives a second “distract” button, where the talkative host of the show, Nicole, will distract the other bakers for a short amount of time. Once the two hours are over, the contestants present their cakes to the judges, who will pick one final winner based on presentation and taste. 

Unlike many other cooking shows where professional chefs compete to be the best out of the best, Nailed It! competitions are held in a bright, cheerful atmosphere. The point is not to be perfect, but rather to have fun and be creative. The two hours of baking time are full of panic and mistakes, yet this chaos makes the show both fun and relatable to the viewers. When the final, disastrous products are presented at the end of the second round, they are compared with the original cakes by the judges (who are renowned patissiers), and the studio gets filled with laughter and joy. Instead of strictly shaming and criticizing the contestants for their failures, the judges encourage them and give them friendly feedback. 

Overall, Nailed It! shows viewers how it is okay to not be perfect, which stands out against the intense striving for perfection in many other cooking shows. Each episode lasts around 30 minutes, so it is perfect for a short break of laughter and relaxation during our busy day. The show can be easily accessed through Netflix, and is recommended to all amateur bakers with a sweet tooth!