Tonight's Cupcake Wars was all about magic. In addition to competing for a $10,000 prize, the winner of tonight's show would have the chance to serve their cakes at the infamous Magic Castle in Los Angeles, California.
Competing tonight were four talented bakers. First, there was a storefront baker from a small town in Indiana. This bakery had recently been voted #1 in the area, and their hope was to win the money to invest in a new location. Also competing was an online baker from San Jose, California. This baker specialized in unique and specialty treats like breakfast, cheese, and spicy cupcakes. The California baker also hoped to win the money to open a storefront. Next were two college friends from the Dallas area. They prided themselves in making both chic and fun baked goods. Last was a husband-and-wife team from New Hampshire.
Round 1 would require bakers to create cupcakes inspired by items related to smoke and mirrors. This included smoked bacon, corn, turkey, and salmon. The Dallas baker thought to add liquid smoke to her batter for a more "smoky" taste. Nonetheless, just a quick taste and she had to throw out the batter and start again. With minutes remaining, the San Jose baker realized she'd failed to make the cream cheese filling for her cakes. Since it included a mandatory ingredient, if the filling didn't get in the cakes, she'd likely be eliminated. Although she was able to get the filling in at the last minute, time constraints prohibited her from icing all of her cakes.
First up to meet the judges was the San Jose baker. Although they didn't appreciate the presentation, a couple of the judges really liked the taste of the cake. The Dallas baker also got mixed reviews. Some of the judges liked her cake; nonetheless, Florian thought there was just too much bacon on the cake. Next was the wife from the New Hampshire team. Florian liked her salmon cake, but Candace thought it was just too fishy. Last to be judged was the Indiana baker. The judges thought her cake was mediocre; thus, she was the first contestant to be sent home.
This round, competitors would be judged 50% on taste and 50% on presentation. Contestants were given 75 minutes to create three different cupcakes with a surprise filling. First off the teams met, and each had really good ideas. But with just one hour left, the Dallas team realized they hadn't added all of their dry ingredients to the ginger cake batter. Later, while decorating the ginger cakes, it was clear they were gooey and needed to go back in the oven. The San Jose team also had problems again. Although they'd frosted and decorated their cakes, with all the rushing, the cakes looked pretty sloppy and poorly done.
Highlights of this round included a lemon/strawberry cupcake, mango/orange cupcake, and a chocolate/lime/spicy cake. Many of the decorations also received high marks. Especially appreciated was a magician's costume and bunny ears. Although both the Dallas and San Jose bakers erred this round, the judges chose to send the Dallas team home.
The Final Round
In the final round, contestants would have to bake 1,000 cupcakes and create a display to hold the cupcakes. To help complete the challenge, each contestant would be given a carpenter and several added assistants. In a twist, for tonight's Cupcake Wars, contestants were also given a magician that would perform a trick that would compliment their displays.
At judging, the San Jose baker presented a display that was a replica of the Magic Castle in Los Angeles. She also incorporated levitating cupcakes in the display. Her magician would turn her cupcakes into playing cards. The New Hampshire team made a magic hat with a rabbit holding a cupcake popping out of the center. Her magician made a cup of milk appear from his jacket, a great compliment to the cupcakes.
After deliberating, the judges awarded tonight's prize to the husband and wife team from New Hampshire.