SWEET GENIUS TV HOST RON BEN-ISRAEL CHALLENGES LOCAL BAKERS DURING
MID-ATLANTIC HOME & GARDEN SHOW MARCH 3
Known as the Food Networks' Sweet Genius celebrity chef, Ron Ben-Israel shares baking secrets during the Mid-Atlantic Home & Garden Show at the Virginia Beach Convention Center on March 3.
At 1 p.m. Ben-Israel judges the Tiny Temptations Cake Competition sponsored by the Culinary Institute of Virginia, ECPI and Hampton Roads Magazine. Ben-Israel entertains the audience on the main stage at 2 p.m. with tales from his show. Just as the master chefs do on TV, Ben-Israel tests the creativity, ingenuity and imagination of four local bakers. Bakers are each presented with a basket of surprise ingredients that must be incorporated into their presentations. During the preparation phase, all show visitors can watch the bakers work against the clock to complete their entries and compete for Critic's Choice or Public's Choice awards.
A special tasting ticket is $25, which includes admission to the home and garden show, Tiny Temptations tasting and Meet-N-Mingle with Chef Ben-Israel. Proceeds from the tasting tickets benefit the Culinary Institute of Virginia Scholarship Fund.
Ben-Israel is known for his chic and elaborate cakes referred to as "the Manolo Blahnik of wedding cakes" by The New York Times, all from his Soho studio in New York City. As a young boy, he grew up enamored by the art of cake-making and utterly captivated by his mother's culinary skills. As a former dancer, he integrates the discipline and meticulous aspects of dance into his products. After serving as an apprentice in France, Ben-Israel took his culinary expertise to New York where his cakes were discovered by Martha Stewart while on display in the windows of Mikimoto on Fifth Avenue.
He occasionally acts as a visiting master pastry instructor at the renowned French Culinary Institute. Although known for his elegant wedding cakes, his creations can also take unconventional transformation like a Wizard of Oz castle or a Chanel purse. With fine attention to detail and profound love put into every piece, a Ben-Israel cake is not just for eating, but, as he describes it, a performance.
When he isn't baking cakes, Ben-Israel sits on the Chef's Council of City Harvest, an organization that collects more than 28 million pounds of excess food from restaurants and distributes it to various community agencies that feed more than 250,000 hungry New Yorkers. Ron's confectionary creations have been featured in countless publications, many times adorning their covers.