So it wasn’t too much of a disappointment when she didn’t make the cut as a finalist.
And then, in a twist of fate, she did.
Cummins and her Spanish bundles with creamy wine sauce entry earned a berth in the semifinals of the competition, held annually for nearly 50 years, back in March and she figured that was all she wrote, in a manner of speaking.
But a couple of months later in June, the 1991 Lakeview High School graduate received a phone call with news of a change in venue for the finals, and with that change opened up an additional finalist spot; and it just so happened that she was the first runner-up eligible for that spot.
“I was a little bit shocked, and I just started laughing,” she said of her reaction to the news.
Cummins said that she’s always enjoyed cooking, and coming up with a recipe for the contest was a bit of a challenge.
“I prayed for inspiration for one thing, to begin with,” Cummins said of her decision to compete. “One of our family’s favorite foods is savory crepes, but that didn’t really fit in with Pillsbury dough.”
Prior to receiving the contest parameters, she considered attempting a hybrid of crepes and biscuits and gravy, and commenced several test runs. However, when she received the guidelines that called for seven ingredients or less and a preparation time of 30 minutes maximum, she shifted in a different direction and came up with her entry.
In doing so, she managed to combine several of her favorite flavors into one unique recipe.
Cummins and her husband, Daniel, will leave for the contest finals in Las Vegas, Nev., this Friday, with orientation set for Sunday, Nov. 10, and the Bake-Off finals scheduled for Monday, Nov. 11.
Cummins lived in Lakeview between seventh and 12th grades, at which time she left the area to attend college. She earned her degree in English literature at Oregon State University. The couple, married in 1995, now resides in Siletz, a community about 14 miles east of Newport with their four children of ages 14, 12, 7 and 3. Husband Daniel owns and operates his own business as a forestry consultant.
A total of 100 finalists are competing in the finals, from which one grand prize winner will be announced at the Bake-Off’s conclusion. The grand prize winner be flown to Los Angeles for a cooking demonstration appearance on The Queen Latifah Show, Cummins said.
Cummins is the daughter of Paul and Dolly Miller of Lakeview.
For more information on the contest, visit www.pillsbury.com.