It’s no secret that Marc Sievers was a fan favorite on America’s Test Kitchen: The Next Generation. From his infectious exuberance to his extensive range of exciting and delicious dishes (and who can forget his ability to say what we were all thinking about Robbie’s muscles), it didn’t take long for Marc to steal our hearts.
ATK: Next Gen’s Marc Sievers Discusses What Kept Him “Sane” on the Show
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Sadly, we bade farewell to Marc after a whirlwind penultimate challenge in which the contestants had to create a three-course dinner for the panel of ATK judges.
But, as you can imagine, leaving the competition is just the next step for Marc in his culinary journey, and we know we haven’t seen the last of this incredibly talented and bubbly chef. Here’s what Marc had to say about his time on the show.
Tell me about your time on the show!
My time on America's Test Kitchen: The Next Generation was absolutely one of the most exhilarating and energizing and complicated and… just the most fun thing I think I've ever done! I was looking for what was next in my career; I've written books, I've done cooking demos all over the country, I've done live demos on television, I've kind of done it all! But I was looking for what's next. The opportunity to be on the show presented itself to me and I thought, “Oh my god, what a great, welcoming home for me this would be!” And it was just so exhilarating to be in the iconic test kitchen with ten other people from such incredibly different backgrounds.
You were clearly very comfortable in front of the camera during the media challenges. Do you think that’s a particular strength of yours?
I love being in front of the camera, and it’s really important to remember that, at ATK, it's all about education. It's not about, “Look at me, look at me, I'm so fabulous!” It's more about connecting with the audience and saying, “Hi, I'm your host, and today we're going to talk about the food.” The food is the “Look at me, look at me!” part of it all.
Let’s talk about that fateful challenge that sent you home.
I've been entertaining for a living for the past ten years. I've done it in my home. I've done it for clients. I've done it for friends who needed help with hosting their own dinner parties. So, I knew I wasn't going to have an issue with timing. I wasn't going to have an issue with creating a menu that was cohesive. I really just wanted my menu to be personal . . . That’s what I do best. I do me really well. I don't do others well . . . I'm an expert at being me! And that was really the key takeaway for me for the three-course menu, creating something that had different textures and different flavors.
You may have noticed throughout the entire competition that I didn't repeat flavors; I didn't repeat ingredients; and I didn't repeat techniques. I really gave what I thought was creative and flavorful food. And I knew that was going to be key.
The entire menu you served during that challenge looked absolutely delicious. Have you made it since?
I actually made the entire menu the night that Episode Nine aired! I sat with my husband and a couple of friends and we all watched the episode together. It was actually kinda hard . . . I think the hardest part was seeing me sashay away and seeing that elevator—those iconic America's Test Kitchen red elevator doors—close. But, you know what, those doors also opened for me at one point!
That’s a beautiful way of looking at it. What do you think your main takeaway from being on the show was?
I think actually the biggest thing that kept me sane during the competition—which is why I think I made it all the way to the semifinals—was that I always viewed the competition as a marathon not a sprint. That’s a quote from my husband, by the way, who is a genius really. And I think I am going to adopt that perspective for my everyday world and everyday life. I think it's really good advice because that is life in general. I think we're all trying to go a million miles an hour sometimes, and I would rather do three things exceptionally well rather than five things that are kind of half-done.