Ho ho ho, oh no!: ‘Nailed It! Holiday!”s best baking fails
Baking competition shows can actually be more complicated than your regular cooking competitions. Baking, believe it or not, is actually far more complex than straight-up cooking. Pastry requires timing and precision in all its facets. The recipes and preparation are simply not as forgiving as savory cooking, in which you can miss a step but still come out with an acceptable product.
Anyone who’s tried to copy Pinterest-worthy desserts has surely felt the pain. Netflix was inspired in creating the ironically named Nailed It! This baking competition pits three (very) amateur bakers against each other to recreate amazing desserts. The real fun of Nailed It! comes when the amateur bakers fail horribly. Everyone knows they’re going to fail; we’re just laughing with the contestants, rather than at them.
With bubbly host Nicole Byer, world-class pâtissier Jacques Torres, and a rotation of guest judges, Nailed It! has been a major success for Netflix, with three seasons and three spinoff shows in different countries (Mexico, France, Spain). Of course, there’s a special holiday version of the series, too. For most people, the most intense baking time is usually in December for their holiday of choice.
Season two of Nailed It! Holiday! will premiere in just a couple weeks. Until we’re graced with this new season of holiday baking fails, let’s take a look at the biggest baking fails of the first season of Nailed It! Holiday!.
“Winter Blunderland” (S1E2): Wintery animal donuts
A lot of delicious treats turn out to be pretty hard to make. One of them is donuts. You have and let your yeast dough proof, then fry it in just the right way. Without a lot of practice, making donuts won’t end well for your average baker off the street. This fail, especially for the poor penguin, turns out to be so bad it became the image for Nailed It! Holiday! on Netflix for a while.
“You Mitzvah Spot!” (S1E3): Hand-dipped dreidels
Despite drowning in a sea of red and green ever year, there are other wintertime holidays to celebrate. It’s appreciated that Nailed It! Holiday! made sure to include Hanukkah rather than just do straight Christmas. While we know that dreidels are made out of clay, these hand-dipped edible dreidels prove a little too much of a gamble for our contestants during the Bakers Choice round.
Bless them; a dreidel is hard enough to make. It gets so much harder and messier when you have to make it edible and dip it in chocolate.
“Toying Around” (S1E5): Robot cake
Nailed It! will always have its contestants go above and beyond in their baking challenges. Easily the hardest Nailed It! Holiday! assignment is the robot cake.
This metallic robot is already a difficult building challenge. Adding working lights to it puts it over the top in terms of a complicated project for the bakers. This was so tantalizingly challenging that someone over at Entertainment Weekly attempted to make it after viewing the episode. They also failed pretty spectacularly.
“3…2…1, Ya Done!” (S1E6): Topsy- Turvy Cake
Former Nailed It! fan favorites return in this episode, which features Jason “I have a life-threatening food allergy to eggs” Mantzoukas as the guest judge.
Things get really funny when it comes time to make the Topsy-Turvy Cake, which appears to have uneven layers. Knephaunatoria Smith’s cake reveal is perfect in all the ways that a great Nailed It! Holiday! reveal should be perfect – mainly because she keeps pronouncing fondant “fundant” through the whole thing.
“It’s a Family A-fail” (S1E4): Turkey cake
A key part of the holidays is that it’s family time. Whether you like your family or just tolerate them, you still spend this magical time of year with them. If you’re old enough to drink, you spend time with them and the mulled wine. For “Nail It or Fail It”, the bakers get assistance from their family members.
Matthew Medeiros proves to be the real hero of the series. While working on his project, he heads into the pantry for a shot. There’s a squeeze bottle of lemon vodka; with Nicole and the others watching, he squeezes some right down.
“Jingle Fails” (S1E1): Cake pop nativity scene
Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus. What better way than to immortalize the Lord and Savior than to eat him. (People do it at church all the time. It’s fine.) In the Baker’s Choice section, our three contestants have to make a cake pop nativity scene. Nothing is quite as hilarious as contestant Kevin Truitt trying to make the Jesus cake pop.
The thought process is just amazing as he tries to slather Joseph and Mary in chocolate. “Man, Jesus helps everybody. So I’m going to dip Jesus to help others . . . using Jesus to get his parents right.”
He then dips Jesus too much in the chocolate and has to grab a “stunt Jesus”. That’s when the “frosted tip”, where the show informs you how to do things correctly, comes up. It only reads: “It’s best to use a spoon instead of a stunt Jesus to cover cake pops in chocolate.”
It’s the funniest moment in an already funny series. You can only hope that it will be topped.