Monthly Archives: September 2014

Crumbs of the Day: Tuesday, Jan. 26

Only 91 years in the making, Japan’s “world’s best blended malt” whiskey is finally coming to the U.S.! -Wall Street Journal

The iPhone rocks the cocktail world with phone-it-in drink apps. Cocktails at home? High-end booze recipes? Done & done.

Saveur Magazine is sharing’s Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes recipe. Simply put, it looks divine. A little sprinkle of truffle salt and I’m done!

I’d try this but I like eating too much! Mandometer helps fast eaters slow down to slim up.

Let the debate begin: Tests add confusion to diagnosing childhood food allergies. Your kid might not be allergic at all.
Courtesy of
Love meatloaf? Hate meatloaf? Luckily, you don’t have to eat it; just LOOK at these hilarious “meatloaf creations!”

Pantry Staples: Five must-have vinegars for every kitchen. Great tips.

WOW! Results of a six-month long journey to find the best pizza in New Jersey coming Friday! Wonder if they went to the JerseyShore?

Day #4 of Holiday Appetizers: Turkey & Basil Tea Sandwiches

Need a quick, easy and light appetizer for a crowd? These turkey and basil tea sandwiches will take you about 30 minutes to throw together and they’re both darling and delicious. Get some cinnamon swirl bread, turkey, basil, make a scallion cream cheese and you’re good to go. Okay, maybe it’s a bit more involved than that, but I’ve got step-by-step directions and photos below. Enjoy!

Turkey Tea Sandwiches

Turkey Tea Sandwiches 

Recipe adapted from Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten

Scallion Cream Cheese:
  • 3/4 pound (12 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup minced scallions (white and green parts)
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 loaf dense raisin-nut or raisin cinnamon swirl bread, sliced
  • 8 thin slices peppered or smoked turkey breast
  • Fresh basil leaves

Directions: For the scallion cream cheese, combine the cream cheese, scallions and the salt and pepper in an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Do not whip.

For the sandwiches, have the store slice the bread lengthwise on a meat slicer into 1/4-inch-thick slices. (If that isn’t possible, you can slice it crosswise with a very sharp knife.) Lay out 8 slices of bread and spread them all with a thin layer of scallion cream cheese. Place a single layer of turkey on half the slices, cutting the edges to fit the bread. Place the basil leaves randomly on top of the turkey. Top with the other 4 slices of bread, cream cheese side down. 

Combine cream cheese, scallions, salt and pepper in electric mixer 

Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Spread the scallion cream cheese on one side of the bread

Spread scallion cream cheese on the other slice of bread

Spread a layer of turkey and basil on one side of the bread

Lay the sandwiches on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper, cover with damp paper towels and wrap the sheet with plastic. Refrigerate until the cream cheese is cold and firm. Place the sandwiches on a cutting board and, with a very sharp knife, cut off the crusts. Cut each large sandwich in half crosswise, and then cut each half diagonally, twice, to make a total of 8 small triangles. (If the bread was cut crosswise, follow the assembly directions, then cut off the crusts and cut diagonally, twice, to make 4 small triangles.) Serve chilled.

Close the sandwich, cut off the crusts and cut into quarters

Place quarters on a parchment-lined baking sheet

Turkey Tea Sandwiches

Pie + Beer at Two Local Pop-Up Pie Shops

Did you know PIE is the #1 food trend predicted for 2011? I, for one, couldn’t be more happy about it — if you’re a regular reader of Pardon My Crumbs, you’ll probably remember the S’mores Campfire Pie I baked for KCRW’s Pie-A-Day contest last year, as well as my list of L.A.’s best pies for National Pie Day a few weeks ago. As if the resurgence of all-things-pie isn’t appetizing enough, now two local pie pop-up shops are pairing a hoppy (err, happy) element with their homemade pies. BEER.
My S’mores Pie

Sunday, Feb. 20 (12-6 p.m.): Flying Pie Man + Eagle Rock Brews
Yuichiro, the Flying Pie Man himself, brings his homemade savory pies to Eagle Rock Brewery (3056 Roswell Street, Los Angeles), famous for its award-winning Red Velvet ale. Few things sound better than digging into a pie — especially when they’re savory flavors such as pork belly, chili, vegetarian pot pie, or Flying Pie Man’s award-winning meat pie — while sipping a frosty brew that was made mere steps away. Even if you can’t hang out, bring your EGB growler for a re-fill and take some pie to-go.
Brews at Eagle Rock Brewery
Photo credit: LA Times
Flying Pie Man’s Award-Winning Meat Pie
Photo credit: Flickr/dommichu

Monday, Feb. 21 (6-10 p.m.): Crust by Stephanie Jayne + Golden State
Aside from my personal favorite happy hour at Oliverio, Crust’s four-hour pop-up appearance at WeHo’s burger & beer bar Golden State (426 Fairfax Ave., WeHo) can certainly be considered the next best thing. Stephanie Jayne, former law-student-turned-pastry-chef-turned-Crust’s-owner, is sure to satiate the after-work, happy hour and dinner crowd with her made-from-scratch pies; think cherry pie with tart red cherries and a perfectly-weaved lattice crust. A Fleur de Sel caramel tart with dark chocolate ganache, salted caramel and addictive cracker brittle (salted crackers layered with caramel crunch and dark chocolate drizzle). Sugary, buttery Missouri butter pie. Classic apple with Washington apples and signature crust, and her version of a campfire S’more pie with milk chocolate ganache, homemade graham cracker and homemade toasted marshmallow. The pies come whole, in individual portions, by the slice, in “shooter” form, and in paper bag-wrapped, handheld pies (finally, a fabulous alternative to McDonald’s crapple pie). Order one of Golden State’s beer floats or a pint of their MANY beers on draft and you’re, well, golden.
Photo credit: Crust By Stephanie Jayne

Crust’s S’mores Pie
Photo credit: Crust By Stephanie Jayne

Filet Mignon w/ Cabernet Sauce

This steak recipe is from the October 2001 issue of Bon Appetit magazine. Bryan’s dad makes it during the holidays and it’s really wonderful. This past Christmas, when my Bryan’s brother and our sister-in-law came over for holiday dinner, she kept asking “Are we having THE steak??” “Are we having THE steak??” I only knew about the homemade ravioli we were making, so I wasn’t able to give her a proper answer. Given that she kept asking other people until she got confirmation that, YES, we were having THE steak, I knew we were in for a real treat!

There are so many great things about this steak recipe, it’s hard to narrow it down. It’s basically a one-pan dish. It only calls for six ingredients (I added three ingredients, but that’s what I tend to do). It only takes about 20 minutes from start to finish. And it tastes awesome, so you’re bound to look like a master chef to your family and friends. Serve this with a crisp iceberg Wedge salad and a baked potato bar (essentially a mini line-up with baked potato toppings like bacon, scallion, sour cream, etc.) and you’ve got a fantastic dinner!

Here’s the original recipe. My modifications are in *italic*, so you can either use them or leave them out:
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) chilled butter
  • 4 filet mignon steaks (each about 4 ounces)
  • 1/3 cup chopped shallots
  • 2/3 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 1 generous tablespoon drained capers
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • *10 ounces sliced Crimini mushrooms
  • *2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • *3 tablespoons water
Generously spray a large nonstick skillet heated over a medium-high flame with cooking spray. Add the mushrooms and cook until they brown and the water has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Melt one tablespoon butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle both sides of steaks with salt and generous amount of ground black pepper. Add to skillet and cook to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium. Transfer steaks to 4 plates. Tent with foil.

Melt one tablespoon butter in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallots; sauté 1 minute. Add wine, capers, and mustard; simmer until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in parsley. Reduce heat to medium-low. Whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Season sauce with salt and pepper. Spoon over steaks.

*I found that the sauce was too salty – granted, it was my first try with it so I’m sure it was my fault – so I added three tablespoons water and two tablespoons heavy cream to tone down the salty flavor. I continued to cook the sauce until it thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Then I spooned it over the steaks.

Day #2 of Holiday Appetizers: Mac & Cheese Cups

Photo Courtesy of Food and Wine Magazine

Who doesn’t like Mac and Cheese? Especially when it’s an adult version filled with Parmesan, Gruyere and Grana Padano cheeses and a drizzle of truffle oil? I know I certainly couldn’t resist that! I went for a PG-rated version at our holiday cocktail party, omitting the truffle oil in favor of a dash of cayenne pepper. Why? Believe it or not, not everyone loves truffle oil (I know, I don’t understand it either) and I wanted to make sure my appetizers were equally opportunity people-pleasers.

I made these the night before our party and popped them in the oven right as the first guests started to arrive. They cooked in about 10 minutes, came out of the pan in perfect little bites and were a serious hit. Friends even came into the kitchen to get first dibs at subsequent batches. They’re super easy, delicious and as low maintenance as mini hot apps get. Here’s how you make them:

Mini Mac and Cheese Cups
Recipe Adapted from Food and Wine Magazine

  • 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for brushing
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 4 ounces Gruyere cheese, shredded (1 packed cup)
  • 4 ounces Grana Padano cheese (or use Parmesan Reggiano)
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

DIRECTIONS: Preheat the oven to 425°. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the macaroni until al dente, about 5 minutes. Drain, shaking off the excess water. Brush four 12-cup, nonstick mini muffin tins with butter. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the Parmigiano; tap out the excess.

Brush the pan with butter and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, melt the 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Whisk in the flour over moderate heat for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and cook, whisking, until boiling, about 5 minutes. Add the Gruyere and Grana Padano cheeses and whisk until melted. Off the heat, whisk in the egg yolk, paprika and cayenne. Fold in the macaroni. Spoon slightly rounded tablespoons of the macaroni into the prepared muffin cups, packing them gently. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmigiano on top. Bake the mini macs in the upper and middle thirds of the oven for about 10 minutes, until golden and sizzling. Let cool for 5 minutes. Using a small spoon, carefully loosen the mini macs, transfer to a platter and serve. Note: The cups can be made ahead and refrigerated overnight. Bake and serve the next day per the directions.

Make the roux and add the Gruyere and Grana Padano cheeses

Stir cheese until melted and comes together

Fold in the macaroni

Pack macaroni and cheese mixture into mini muffin tin

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and bake until bubbling and crispy