'Worst' cook not quite good enough

Onetime "worst cook" Vinnie Caligiuri of Jenkintown with his wife, Jeanette, and sons Dylan, 12, and Nick, 15. The boys' older brother, Ryan, nominated Caligiuri as a contestant on a Food Network reality show where he was taught to cook. "An amazing experience," Caligiuri says.

Ah, he was bad - all right - but in the end, he was not good enough.

Vinnie Caligiuri of Jenkintown submitted himself to the Food Network reality show Worst Cooks in America. Under the tutelage of Bobby Flay, Caligiuri improved dramatically.

But on Sunday night's finale, rival chef Anne Burrell and her protege Kelli Powers of Valley Village, Calif., were declared the winner by judges Marcus Samuelsson, Susan Feniger, and David Burke.

Caliguiri's three-course meal was yellow-tail tartare with bacon tangerine dressing and toasted fennel crostini; squab marsala with broccoli rabe risotto, and pistachio creme brulee topped with berries.

Powers, who won $25,000, prepared sweet potato crab cannelloni; porterhouse steak with roasted cauliflower and poached egg, and  apple crostada with caramel sauce and apple chips.

Caligiuri, a mortgage broker and former radio yakker known as Vinnie the Crumb, got a cooking set.

This is the second Worst Cooks to see a Philadelphia finish No. 2. In the show's first season, Jenny Cross of South Philly finished out of the money.

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