Howland bakers appear on new reality show ‘Bake It Like Buddy’

HOWLAND — They’ve battled on “Cake Wars,” and now The Cake Boutique’s owners will try to “Bake It Like Buddy.”

Stella Kotsatos-Angelo and Penny Bennett, owners of the bake shop at 4248 N. River Road NE, will compete on the new reality series hosted by Buddy Valestro, best known as the star of “Cake Boss.”

The episode was filmed in February in New Jersey, where Valestro’s Carlo’s Bakery is located, but Kotsatos-Angelo and Bennett won’t see what made it into the half-hour program until it airs at 9 p.m. Saturday on Discovery Family.

“We had a lot of drama, a lot go wrong,” Kotsatos-Angelo said. “We had so much going on, it would really make a six-hour show.”

Bennett had to be tended to twice by paramedics during the four hours the duo had to create a sci-fi- themed cake.

“I had a little virus going in,” Bennett said. “I didn’t eat anything, I didn’t drink anything. We got up at 4 in the morning, and I didn’t sleep. With the lights, it got really hot, and when the body overheats, the heart starts to race.”

Bennett was sidelined for about about 15 minutes the first time, a little over halfway through the competition, and the paramedics were called in a second time with only six minutes left.

“The second time I was actually hallucinating,” Bennett said.

With Bennett feeling ill, Kotsatos-Angelo was forced to keep working solo.

“The clock didn’t stop,” she said. “I had to keep going.”

Having had the experience of competing on Food Network’s “Cake Wars” (the duo won their challenge in 2016) made “Bake It” easier because they already were familiar with the lights and the cameras. However, since it was a new show, they couldn’t watch past episodes to prepare.

Unlike “Cake Wars,” there’s only one round, not two, on “Bake It.” And instead of competing against three other bakers, Valestro’s show is a head-to-head competition between two teams. The Cake Boutique’s opponent was a brother-sister duo from Cincinnati. The winning team gets $1,000 and professional baking supplies.

“It was the battle of Ohio teams,” Kotsatos-Angelo said.

Bennett added, “We even got Buddy going, “O-H … I-O.”

Both said the atmosphere was more relaxed than “Cake Wars.”

“Buddy was more like not wanting to see you fail, whereas on ‘Cake Wars’ they want to see the failures,” Bennett said. “It makes better TV.”

Kotsatos-Angelo said, “He said, ‘Neither one of you lost. Both teams were amazing. You came on, did your thing and executed it well.’ He was very sympathetic, very compassionate. He understands, because he does it.”