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Burger champion takes home $50,000 prize


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POSTED: Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Kristine Snyder's Hawaii Da Kine Burgers won her a national title Saturday - and the $50,000 grand prize in Sutter Home's Build a Better Burger contest.

Snyder, a harpist from Kihei, Maui, is the state's most successful recipe champion, having won the National Chicken Cooking Contest, and placed in the Pillsbury Bake-Off and the National Beef Cook-Off since she started entering national contests in 2000. Last year she won the Food Network's “;Ultimate Recipe Showdown”; and a $25,000 prize.

She also won the Better Burger contest in 2001, when the prize was $20,000. This year's win, over nine other finalists in a grill-off held in Napa Valley, Calif., is her biggest.

Snyder said she entered a similar recipe last year, but it didn't place. “;I believed in it and I kept revising it.”;

Almost immediately after winning, Snyder was hustled onto a plane for New York, where she appeared on NBC's “;Today Show”; Monday. She prepared her burgers for hosts Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford.

“;It was cool. They did my hair ... It was so official. Not like doing 'Hawaii's Kitchen.'”;

Her winnings actually totaled $52,500, as Snyder's burgers also took the People's Choice prize. She says she plans to buy a new grill and, as cliched as it sounds, she wants to go to Disney World.