Entertaining Ideas from The Taste Contestants

Entertaining Ideas from The Taste Contestants

"If anything, [The Taste] was like a cooking school on steroids," explains Uno Immanivong, a contestant on the ABC cooking competition, which the network has renewed for a second season. While Immanivong (who is in the process of opening a restaurant in Dallas) referenced learning from the celebrity mentors Nigella Lawson, Anthony Bourdain, Ludo Lefebvre and Brian Malarkey and the other contestants, caterer and contestant Ninamarie Bojekian found that the mentors even learned from the contestants at times. "[Bourdain] really felt like he could learn as much from us as we could for him," she says. "He allowed us to show him things as well."

Contestant and professional chef Adam Pechal, on the other hand, tended to follow his gut. "You have one hour [so] you don't really have time to second guess yourself or experiment with someone else's ideas," he explains. "I always stuck to myself."

Wherever they found inspiration, all three contestants have plenty of experience cooking for guests from which we can learn. Not only have they cooked for friends, family and patrons but for four of the toughest "dinner guests," the four mentors of The Taste.

Check out the slideshow above to learn the ultimate tricks, tips and secrets to cooking for guests and entertaining from the knowledgeable contestants.