A battle of tasty proportions

Local women compete on ‘Cupcake Wars'


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Kastle Sorensen decorates cupcakes Friday, Nov. 15. In June, she competed on “Cupcake Wars.”

MIKE NESPER

Kastle Sorensen recently became a veteran — well in the baking world.

In June, the 2003 Chugiak High grad competed in “Cupcake Wars,” a competition cooking show on the Food Network that pits four bakers against each other.

Sorensen’s episode will be aired Saturday, Nov. 23 at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Alaska.

Sorensen, owner of Kastle’s Kreations, and her assistant, Amy Grue, traveled to Los Angeles in the summer for the taping. The competition is filmed in just one day, Sorensen said.

“It’s definitely a long day,” she said.

The teams toured the kitchen but weren’t permitted to bake anything prior to competition day.

The huge kitchen area was foreign to Sorensen, who was used to baking inside of her white and pink truck — which she sells her goodies out of.

As if being on TV and baking in an unfamiliar kitchen wasn’t stressful enough, the Alaskan women had a unique theme for their show — aquarium. Every episode has a different theme, and Sorensen and Grue had to incorporate seafood into their cupcakes.

This was Sorensen’s third time auditioning for the show. She and Grue, of Eagle River, had never worked together before then — and they had just a month to familiarize themselves with one another before the taping.

“We were with each other all the time,” Sorensen said.

If Sorensen was going to travel thousands of miles to compete on TV, she said she didn’t intend on losing.

“We watched every single episode,” Sorensen said. “We were studying what the judges were saying.”

Knowing what the judges do and don’t respond to is essential, Sorensen said.

“It’s season nine. They’ve seen a lot of stuff,” she said. “You have to make sure you impress them.”

Being judged by world-class pasty chefs was exciting, Sorensen said.

“It’s also very scary and intimidating,” she said.

“I didn’t go to pastry school,” Sorensen said. “I just learned it on my own.”

A former teacher and banker, Sorensen started Kastle’s Kreations in 2011.

Appearing on the show was a thrill — but one Sorensen had to keep a secret. She was permitted to speak about the taping last week after five months of silence.

During the show, the four teams are whittled down to one winner through three rounds of competition.

“It’s a lot of waiting and anticipation,” Sorensen said.

Though word’s out about her appearance, Sorensen can’t reveal how far she and Grue made it.

Everyone will just have to wait until Saturday to find out.

Sorensen said competing on “Cupcake Wars” was a great experience, and one she wanted to share with her fellow Chugiak-Eagle River residents. She is holding a viewing party open to the entire community at Pizza Man in Eagle River from 3 to 6 p.m. on Saturday.

“It will be fun to share with the community,” Sorensen said.

And yes, some of her homemade treats will be served.

 

Contact Mike Nesper at 694-2727 or mike.nesper@alaskastar.com

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