Upstate Baker Falls Short In Great American Baking Competition - WSPA.com

Upstate Baker Falls Short In Great American Baking Competition

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Francine Bryson (Courtesy CBS) Francine Bryson (Courtesy CBS)
PICKENS, S.C. -

Updated: July 10, 2013

Pickens County baker Francine Bryson fell short in her goal of winning the Great American Baking Competition during the show's finale Wednesday night on CBS.

Bryson's first dish, a spiced peanut butter torte was mixed with negative reviews by the judges. However, her second dish, doughnuts, received more favorable reviews and elicited a response from her that, "I am going to kick (expletive) in the Showstopper competition." Her "Showstopper" was also received with mixed reviews.

After reuniting with all of their families the three bakers, Francine, Darlene and Brian, received the news they eagerly awaited. Brian was ultimately named champion.

Just last week Bryson survived elimination and was selected as one of three remaining bakers on the show.

"I never thought it would be this way," Bryson said.

Besides her family and friends, Bryson has gained a new following of fans.

"I definitely miss being able to jump in the car in my pajamas and run to the store," says Bryson, "it is a process now."

Bryson met up with former competitor Effie Sahihi on Wednesday afternoon in preparation of the finale.

"We literally talk at least once a day and then text like probably a hundred times a day," said Sahihi.

The pair became close friends while filming the show that wrapped up production in March.

"We are tried and true, die-hard friends and that is the greatest part about it," Bryson adds.

Updated: July 3, 2013

Upstate baker and local celebrity Francine Bryson survived elimination Wednesday night and is one of three people to make the final round in the American Baking Competition.

In the first bake of the night, the judges were not please with the berries on her tarte tatin, but Francine finished second in the Technical Bake in the Napoleans. In the Showstopper competition, Francine's choux tower had burnt sugar and the judges were not too impressed with the size of the creme puffs.

However, her performance throughout has been enough to continue to the finale next Wednesday. James and Elaine were eliminated.

Updated: June 26, 2013

Pickens County resident Francine Bryson is among the final five contestants in the American Baking Competition.

Bryson continued her quest for the grand prize of $250,000 and a book deal as she handled the custard challenge, made a chocolate souffle that impressed the judges and a delicious meringue dish. Early in the show, she got emotional and conceded that she did not dream that she would be on such a big stage,

Tune in next Wednesday at 9 p.m. to see how she fares in the next round.   

Updated: June 19, 2013

Upstate baker Francine Bryson advanced to the next round after Wednesday's episode of  CBS's American Baking Competition.

The show is now in its fourth week and Bryson, of Pickens, is still in the hunt for the $250,000 grand prize and book deal.

She is one of six contestants remaining after tackling the technical bake challenge of soft pretzels and the final challenge of croissants.

Updated: June 12, 2013

Upstate baking star Francine Bryson continued in her journey  Wednesday night on the CBS show American Baking Competition.

Bryson, of Pickens, advanced for the third week in a row. She won the technical bake in Wednesday night's episode by baking a tequila chiffon pie. Earlier in the show she made a Cherry Soda Pop Cake.

In the first show, Bryson won the first week's challenge with her Chocolate Peanut Butter Bacon pie.

Updated: June 5, 2013

Francine Bryson, of Pickens, advanced to the next week of the competition on the new CBS show The American Baking Competition.

She shocked the judges with her "Slap Your Mama Good" cookies and showed well in the other two sections of the competition Wednesday night.   Here's the recipe for her cookies.

Whitney, the college student from Texas, was eliminated from the competition.

You can catch next week's competition on Wednesday at 8 p.m.

Updated: May 30, 2013

Francine Bryson, of Pickens, won Wednesday night's challenge during the first episode of the Great American Baker Wednesday night.

The Great American Baking Competition kicked off at 8 p.m. on CBS.  Bryson made quite an impression after she received a rave review from Judge Paul Hollywood after preparing a chocolate peanut butter bacon pie.

"A little back always goes a long way," Bryson says. "Yes! Paul Hollywood is definitely one of my heroes. For him to actually like something I have cooked I am on cloud 43,000."

Bryson is one of the nine remaining contestants trying to win a $250,000 grand prize and Simon and Schuster contract.

"It's so humbling that everybody likes my cooking and has sort of gripped towards me and my personality and who I am," she told 7 On Your Side.  "And it's just...I was up until 4:30 this morning answering questions and comments and ideas and things, and it was just...it's overwhelming, and it's so surreal."

Don't miss the next episode of the American Baking Competition Wednesdays on CBS at 8 p.m.

Here is Francine's winning recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Bacon pie.

Click here to read more about the contestants and the competition.

Posted: May 16, 2013

You'd never guess that on the back roads of Pickens County, down a narrow dirt driveway, lives a great American Baker worth betting on.

Francine Bryson is competing in the CBS show "The American Baking Competition," and although she couldn't share much about the competition, she gladly talked about her baking skills and her future plans.

Bryson said the call came from Hollywood months ago and at first, she thought it was a telemarketer.

"I picked up and they said something about being from the baking competition and could I be in Nashville in 2 days!" said Bryson. "I told them I'd see what I could do, but it was nothing definite," she said.

Soon enough she was competing with other bakers cooking the thing she dreaded the most, biscuits.

"I am a good Southern woman and I, of course, can cook fried chicken, It's how I caught my husband. My biscuits were like hockey pucks however, nuclear weapons, I couldn't do it to save my life," said Bryson.

That day she prayed to the "Biscuit Gods", she said, and weeks later she made the competition. After this once in a lifetime experience is over, Francine told 7 On Your Side that she'd like to teach others to cook.

"There's no reason to be scared of an oven and it's not a monster, it can be your friend," she said. Francine also dreams of opening a bakery in downtown Pickens one day. She said she'd like to name it Purdy's Pies, after a nickname given to her by her husband Mark.

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