Tarek Husseini had the right stuff in Monday night's finals of the spaceship-themed "Kids Baking Championship," but so did the two other finalists.
Tarek, the 13-year-old wunderkind baker from Ladue, did not win the championship and the $25,000 that comes with it. Trevin Alford, 13, of Washington, Ind., took the grand prize.
The other finalist was 12-year-old Sophie Tate of Stansbury Park, Utah.
Tarek Husseini likes to bake. He really, really likes to bake. And his proficiency at baking…
The theme for the finals was Out-of-This-World cakes. Hosts Duff Goldman and Valerie Bertinelli said they were lost in space and wanted the young bakers to make cakes to represent their journey home. Tarek chose to make a cake representing their spaceship; Trevin made a cake that looked like a planet and Sophie baked an alien cake.
Tarek's effort was a three-tiered chocolate cake with mint-chocolate chip butter cream and toasted marshmallows mixed into the filling. The top of the spaceship was created out of an enormous cake pop, molded into a dome-shaped bowl.
It was the fourth time Tarek made a chocolate cake for the show, a fact that was noted disapprovingly by Goldman. The bakers were also pressed to make a cookie representing the Earth; Tarek made a lemon sugar cookie, with colored royal icing that was too runny.
The judges praised Tarke's creativity but disdained his cake's messy appearance.
The season began with nine young bakers. Tarek made it through each week to the final round of three.