Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 46

As seen on TV
Georgia's competitive cooks battle for top honors
BY H.M. CAULEY

T

COURTESY FOOD NETWORK

he rolling cameras, the judges'
intense scrutiny, the challenge to
devise last-minute concoctions.
Being on a competitive cooking
show isn't for the faint of fork. But for
those who can stand the heat, being
part of a network food contest can be
the ultimate thrill, bringing both personal and professional rewards.
Georgia has more than a few
chefs who have proved their mettle
on the small screen. Here, they share
their stories and their favorite recipes,
which will make any home cook a
star as well.

Jim Stancil, Oxford
What started as a tailgate party
grew into a catering business and
several television competitions for
Jim Stancil. About 20 years ago, he'd
haul his grills and lawn chairs to the
old Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium in
the early morning hours before an
Atlanta Falcons game and then cook
up a bounty of football food.
"It went from a small to a much
larger tailgate, and then I heard about
a barbecue contest and decided I
would do that," he says.
Initially, Stancil was still working as a drapery installation contractor and did most of his cooking
and competing on the weekends. It
wasn't long before people who had
tasted his barbecue were paying him
to cater their functions, and Bare
Knuckles Barbecue was born.
"Eventually, I had to stop going to football games and just concentrate on cooking," he says with a
laugh.
For the last several years, he's
been part of competitions in Cartersville, Columbus, Dillard, Barnesville
and Hawkinsville as well as others
around the Southeast and in Las Vegas and Texas.
46

Jim Stancil prepares lamb chops for the appetizer round of "Chopped Grill Masters."
Stancil says this first-round competition was very intense.

Five years ago, Stancil appeared
on Destination America's "BBQ Pitmasters" Season 3, where his wagyu
brisket won accolades. He took home
$10,000 for his grilling skills on Travel
Channel's "American Grilled," and last
August he was featured on Food Network's "Chopped Grill Masters." He
credits many of those shows with giving him his cooking know-how.
Stancil prefers to grill over charcoal, but he's also fond of hardwood
smokers and a gas grill in a pinch.
The recipe that always wins rave reviews is his grilled salmon, which
blends olive oil, pepper, salt, lemon
zest, garlic and a homemade teriyaki
glaze of brown sugar, fresh ginger
and dill.
But having fabulous food is just
one element of winning a cooking
contest, Stancil says.
"You also have to 'sell' what
you're cooking, so your personality
has to be there, too," he says. "It's a
lot of pressure, it's stressful and it's
very difficult when the cameras are
More online at www.georgiamagazine.org

rolling and there are 49 people standing around watching. But it's also a
lot of fun."

Amanda Faber, Atlanta
Amanda Faber's fanaticism for
baking began about five years ago
when she and her husband moved to
a rural Virginia area with no bakery
for miles.
Growing up in Marietta, she'd occasionally bake cakes and make caramel candies with her mom, but she
had no formal training.
"I went to school for art but
dropped out because it didn't resonate with me," she says. "But I figured out how to bake and took to it
like mad. I tell people my Grandma
Google taught me everything, and
now cakes are the place where I can
express myself. They're my medium."
So broad was Faber's affection
for sugar that she explored all sorts
of sweet creations.
"I'd make whatever I had a taste
for," she says.
GEORGIA MAGAZINE


http://www.georgiamagazine.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia Magazine - January 2018

Contents
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - Intro
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - Cover1
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - Cover2
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 3
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - Contents
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 5
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 6
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 7
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 8
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 9
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 10
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 11
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 12
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 13
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 14
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 15
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 16
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 17
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 18
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 19
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Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 22
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 23
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 24
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 25
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 26
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 26A
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 26B
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 26C
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 26D
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 27
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Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 29
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Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 38
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 38A
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 38B
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Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 48A
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 48B
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Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 50A
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - 50B
Georgia Magazine - January 2018 - Cover3
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