It was a memorable holiday season for former Top Chef: Chicago contestant Nikki Cascone.

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Cascone, a 36-year-old chef and restaurant co-owner from New York City, got engaged to Brad Grossman, her longtime boyfriend and restaurant partner, over the holidays, People magazine reported Monday.

"I'm beyond happy," Cascone told People. "My only issue is that I can't cook with my engagement ring on!"

Cascone and Grossman co-own 24 Prince, a restaurant in New York City's SoHo district.

The 31-year-old Grossman proposed to Cascone while she was cooking dinner.

"I tied the ring around one of the dogs' necks and tried to get him to run over to Nikki," Grossman told People. "But that wasn't happening ... so in the end I told Nikki to go see the dog."

And once she did, it apparently didn't take her long to begin planning the couple's wedding.

"Nikki started planning two seconds after I proposed," Grossman told People.

Cascone and Grossman are planning to wed in Spring 2010 ceremony that will be "green and sustainable" and feature 200 guests, according to People.

Cascone finished in eighth place on Top Chef: Chicago, the fourth season of the Bravo reality culinary competition that aired last spring.