WANTED: New Talent with Strong Cultural and Family Food Traditions to Host Digital Series at CreateTV.com

APT will award prizes including money and production equipment to the top two winners, whose local public television stations will receive a monetary award to help with local promotion. Home and professional chefs encouraged to enter.

The Create Cooking Challenge: My Family’s Recipe is live March 8th through April 5th! This is the fifth Create Challenge that American Public Television (APT) has launched since 2016. These are contests designed to engage public television viewers who want to be part of Create TV’s lifestyle content as hosts of their own digital series.  As a result, these Challenges have discovered new talent from more than 100 markets across the country.  Hundreds of on-camera hopefuls have participated, with nearly 80 winners gaining a strong digital presence on CreateTV.com

APT identified a growing trend with entries focused on recipes that have crossed generations and come from a variety of backgrounds and cultures.  This year’s theme, The Create Cooking Challenge: My Family’s Recipe, is focused on family food traditions, inviting viewers to submit video of recipes that reflect their heritage, favorite traditional dishes, or regional cuisine.  APT is casting a wide net across national major media as well as multicultural press, TV and radio to engage participants from backgrounds that represent the rich tapestry that is the American experience.

Why this contest is important

What keeps more than 40 million viewers a year tuning in to Create TV?  Our devotees consistently tell APT and the Create Team that the programming and personalities featured on Create TV over its 17 years have made it their favorite channel.  Many attest to leaving it on all day, saying “it’s like having your best friends in your home, sharing the same things you enjoy!”  When APT* premiered distribution of The French Chef with Julia Child in the early 1960s, a world of possibility opened to viewers.  Suddenly, they could see themselves sharing the joy they find in the kitchen.  As Julia Child said, “Find something you’re passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.”  The desire to be part of this lifestyle platform, doing something they love, has been an inspiration to the hundreds who have entered Create Challenges during the past five years.  The possibility of winning a digital series on CreateTV.com, and becoming part of the Create family of hosts, presents a dream come true for many fans.  The quality of the entries over the years reveals an audience with talent, knowledge and the skills to become public media on-camera personalities!

What’s new this year: more for the winners and more for the top two winners’ respective stations!

The winning entries, along with select stand-out submissions, will become part of a new feature on the recently redesigned website at CreateTV.com.  Create’s Heritage Recipe Collection will represent the best of this year’s entries as well as recipes from past winners and hosts across Create’s food genre, including many of this year’s judges.  That’s why stories about the recipe and its importance to the family will be part of the submission. 

In addition, a monetary award of $3,500 will be given to the local public television stations of the Grand Prize and Second Prize winners.  This support will allow each of the two stations to introduce and promote the winner to their local audience!

Meet the Judges

Create Cooking Challenges have had the support of nearly 20 Create TV lifestyle series hosts as Final Judges. Three of them have helped lead the charge more than once!  This year’s judges include Kevin Belton (Kevin Belton’s Cookin’ Louisiana), Pati Jinich (Pati’s Mexican Table), Diane Kochilas (My Greek Table), Nick Stellino (Storytellers in the Kitchen), and Martin Yan (Yan Can Cook!).  Each is an accomplished chef, recognized by their peers with numerous awards.  Their series offer a look into diverse cuisine and traditions. 

FUN FACT: Martin Yan was recently hailed by The New York Times as one whose “impact on the culinary sphere is immeasurable,” with a 40+ year television legacy spanning more than 2,000 episodes! Find out more about all the judges.

Meet the Past Create Challenge Winners

Create Cooking Challenges have produced top winners from New York, California and Maine. Grand Prize Winner of the first Cooking Challenge in 2016 was Jaime Isobe of Brooklyn, NY.  A fifth generation Japanese American born in Alabama, Jaime’s series Isobe Food, provides a great example of how family traditions and heritage play into current day recipes.  His recipes include a multicultural mix of ingredients with a hint of Southern influence. 

2017 Grand Prize Winner, Buki Elegbede, focused his series on baking.  Baked by Buki takes viewers into his kitchen where baked goods – both traditional and non-traditional – are deliciously prepared.  Growing up in a home with Nigerian parents, Buki learned cooking as a family affair in an environment where food was key to togetherness. The Second Prize winner in 2017 was Chris Nance, based just outside of Los Angeles.  In the series Chris’ Kitchen, he shares favorite recipes from his southern grandmother that have become part of his extended family’s traditions.  

Kiya Schnorr, was a dancer living in Manhattan when she won the 2018 Grand Prize. After relocating to Seattle, she is now a cooking instructor and loves experimenting with new recipes and ingredients often reflective of the regional influence.  Her series Cooking with Kiya: Two Minute Techniques shares interesting dishes with many eclectic influences.

Last year’s challenge focused on crafters. Martin Amado, the Grand Prize Winner of the Create Crafts Challenge, is a South Florida PBS viewer, and combines his craftwork with interior design to redefine and redecorate spaces.  A host often seen on Telemundo as well as local commercial television, Martin’s 10-part digital series, DIY with Martin Amado, features great ideas repurposing low-cost items as well as found goods. Second Prize winner Dinah Wulf won while living in greater Los Angeles, but she and her family moved and are now Atlanta suburbanites.  Her three-part digital series, DIY Inspired Upcycling with Dinah Wulf, focuses upon reworking or “upcycling” what you have on hand.

About American Public Television (APT)   

For more than six decades, APT has been the leading syndicator of high-quality, top-rated programming to the nation’s public television stations, distributing more than one-third of the highest-rated public TV titles.  APT also distributes multicast channels Create TV and the public affairs channel, WORLD. Create is produced and distributed by American Public Television (APT), The WNET Group (New York), and GBH Boston, in association with National Educational Telecommunications Association (NETA) and PBS. Counted on for a diverse, wide range of programming genres from documentaries to dramas, and movies to news and current affairs programs, APT features an impressive program catalog prolific in how-to, lifestyle programming.  For more information about APT visit APTonline.org.

The Create Cooking Challenge: My Family’s Recipe is sponsored by American Public Television. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of the U.S., District of Columbia, and U.S. Territories, age 18 or over. Begins 3/8/22 12:01 a.m. ET; ends 4/5/22 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Void where prohibited.

*APT was founded in 1961 as the Eastern Educational Television Network (EEN).