One of the highlights of the almost one-year-old Oprah Winfrey Network was the original series "Your Own Show: Oprah's Search for the Next TV Star." On the program ten contestants competed to be blessed by Oprah and land their place on Oprah's line-up.
True to fashion, Oprah surprised everyone when she crowned two winners - Kristina Kuzmic and Zach Anner. Kuzmic's show will be the first out of the gate when she premieres "The Ambush Cook" on Saturday, December 3. In a recent exclusive interview, she talked about the new series and how it's evolved since "Your Own Show."
Kristina Kuzmic Explains What Sets 'The Ambush Cook' Apart
Kuzmic explained what will set "The Ambush Cook" apart from all the other foodie fare on television. "A lot of cooking shows out there tend to intimidate people. And one thing is, I don't have a culinary degree. I don't have awards for being chef extraordinaire."
Instead, Kuzmic is much more relatable. She continued, "I'm just a mom who has been passionate about cooking her whole life. So my show definitely will not intimidate even people who've never touched a spatula. They're going to turn on the show and go, 'She can do it. I can do it.' And that's a big thing that's missing out of a lot of cooking shows."
But she noted that it will also be enjoyable for more seasoned chefs. "There's a nice balance for people that have never cooked. The recipes are really easy. I explain everything. But then for people who have cooked for years, they won't be bored by it because the recipes are really interesting and there's a lot of new stuff. I try to be creative and mix things up and not do the stuff that's already been seen on other cooking shows."
Kristina Kuzmic Hopes to Change People's Lives on 'The Ambush Cook'
Each week Kuzmic will surprise a culinary challenged person and take them back to her kitchen for a lesson. She talked about the process of finding her guests, saying, "What was interesting was that when we started looking for people who need help cooking, we started realizing that there really, genuinely are a lot of people out there who have real fears in the kitchen. And so we really tried to do more than just put on a fun little show but really help these people out."
Besides delivering fun, easy to prepare recipes, Kuzmic hopes to transform people in a more profound way. Kuzmic revealed, "My guests are fearful of the kitchen, but we all have things that intimidate us in life. And I'm hoping that the show will inspire people to go, 'You know what? I'm just going to go throw myself in there and try it and fight that fear to learn whatever it is I want to learn, to achieve whatever it is I want to achieve.'"
She added, "I'm also hoping that other people out there, especially maybe moms with small kids and maybe life is hard and they've given up on their dreams. If they can see me just really enjoying my life and enjoying the fact that I fought for my dreams, maybe it will inspire them to go, 'Wait, just because I have little kids, just because life is busy and crazy, does not mean I need to give up on my passions.' So I'm hoping it will do more than just teach great recipes.
Watch "The Ambush Cook" when it premieres Saturday, December 3 at 12 p.m. EST/11 a.m. Central on OWN.
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