Sunday, September 18, 2005

Snap Crackle Pop

My friend Amanda acquired a purse two years ago. Not just any purse. To the naked eye, this purse was a Prada. Amanda toted this purse as though it was Prada. One day in the grocery store, I was pushed out of my spot in the checkout line to hear the words..."Excuse me! Prada coming through!" But alas, no matter how she flaunted it, how she loved it, the label would allays read Prado. And it wasn't at an upscale boutique, but rather a duty free stall (or the trunk of someone's car) in the Virgin Islands that this purse came from. Most likely sitting next to the Goaches, the Fendy's, and the Cucchi's.

There is a dessert on my menu right now that reminds me of Amanda and her Prada.

The dish is Dark Chocolate Rice Pudding with Caramelized Rice Crispies. Anyone with the Pierre Herme Chocolate cookbook will recognize this genius dish.

I made a dark chocolate rice pudding of my own recipe one day. I had tested several garnishes. I found adorable dishes remnicent of soda shops and ice cream parlors of days past. And as I was flipping through PH's book, there it was. The perfect garnish, staring back at me. I couldn't avoid it. I couldn't beat it. Caramelized rice crispies sitting atop his chocolate rice pudding.

So I did it. I followed the instructions, coating the cereal in boiled sugar, letting them cool, and then stirring them in small batches over heat until each one was individually coated in a thin caramel shell. They are like a grown up version of a rice crispie treat. All sugar, but crisp rather than gooey.

And then I put them on my rice pudding and set it to the menu. And I love it, with all my pastry heart. Deeply.

Pierre Herme is often compared to fashion designers, even presenting a yearly line of desserts as a designer would, the last dish always being a wedding cake. So it is not a stretch of the imagination to compare an imitation of his perfection to the imitation Prada that Amanda carried. Pierre Sherme. Pierre Hermet.

But rather than flaunt something that's not mine, I'll be the first to admit the origin of this garnish. It's not uncommon or wrong for one chef to be inspired by another. But it is shameful to pass it off as your own, telling people you invented it. So I guess I'll just have to be the first to thank this man for his inspiration, give credit where credit is due, and pay my respects with good execution.

2 Comments:

Blogger Mouser said...

Chocolate Rice Pudding! I need that recipe!

September 18, 2005 11:54 PM  
Anonymous purse said...

Jammin site! I have to run, but needed to comment. I like how you present stuff. Have a most happy New Year. Yours,
purse

December 29, 2005 10:35 PM  

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