HEAD COOK: Karen Smithson
COMPETITION: World Dessert Championship
I was born and raised in the Dallas, TX and surrounding area. I have lived in TX, MT, MO, AK, AR and MN with each of those places having some sort of influence upon my culinary tastes . I really began to learn to cook early in my marriage. It became something that I thoroughly enjoyed doing for my family. I entered my first cooking competition in the late 1990's that was sponsored by a local grocery store. I ended up placing first in one category and honorable mention in another. It greatly boosted my confidence in experimenting in the kitchen. After my oldest daughter married and had a family of her own she began food contesting and encouraged me to enter contests along with her. It was a great time for her and I to spend time together. She has had far more success than I but she always encourages me to keep going.