Peanut Butter S’More with Strawberry Marshmallows & Bacon Peanut Brittle and Pebble Beach Food & Wine Recap part three

by Irvin on July 1, 2011 · 9 comments

If you have visited my blog this week, you’ve read about my adventures with Sabrina at the Pebble Beach Food and Wine where I noshed on sustainable seafood and grilled cheese with wine, all the while hob nobbing with fancy pants food obsessed people. But the place to go and be seen was the Tasting Pavilion tent where the celebrity chefs were at, and where everyone was lining up to get a sample of savory and sweet treats. It was there that I experienced a dessert that inspired my dinner party worthy plated dessert, the Peanut Butter Smores with Toasted Strawberry Marshmallow and Bacon Peanut Brittle.

Peanut Butter S'more with Toasted Strawberry Marshmallows and Bacon Peanut Brittle jpg

Peanut Butter S'more with Toasted Strawberry Marshmallows and Bacon Peanut Brittle

The Tasting Pavilion tent was the one place that everyone stopped at during the event. Even if you skip out on all the session, the Tasting Pavilion had all the big name chefs and all the amazing wineries for you to sip and taste. As I walked in, I noticed that there were rows of glasses for you to pick up and use for tasting. I immediate snagged a glass (even though I don’t really drink) and prepared myself for what was sure to be an epic tasting event.

Pebble Beach Tasting Pavilion Wine Glasses jpg

Pebble Beach Tasting Pavilion Wine Glasses

Still reeling from the grilled cheese tasting I had right beforehand, I walked in and immediately saw Sherry Yard, my pastry idol. If you’ve read my blog before, you might know that I’ve talked about Sherry’s book The Secrets of Baking. It’s pretty much the one book that I felt actually changed the way I bake. Before that book, I viewed baking as following a recipe. But Sherry’s book breaks down each component of a dessert and explains master recipes and variations of the recipe. In short, it teaches you how to actually create you own dessert, not just follow a recipe to create someone else’s dessert. This was revolutionary to me.

Sherry Yard and Irvin Lin at Pebble Beach Food and Wine jpg

Chef Sherry Yard and fanboy Irvin Lin at Pebble Beach Food and Wine

So, of course, I immediately went into fan boy mode (which surprised even more, as I have never done that before) and ran up to her, gushing about how she changed my life. Though I’m sure I scared the heck out of her, Sherry was more than gracious and allowed me take a number of pictures of her and her cookie station, and even told me swing by later to grab a cookie lollipop from her. Sweetness from Ms. Yard herself!

Oh, and the cookies, they were fantastic. But what do you expect from the woman who creates the desserts for the Academy Awards, Grammy’s and Emmy’s as well as the fine dining for all of Wolfgang Puck’s restaurants?

Sherry Yard and her cookie station. jpg

Sherry Yard and her cookie station.

Sherry Yard brought cookies! jpg

Sherry Yard brought cookies!

A cookie wonderland by Sherry Yard. jpg

A cookie wonderland by Sherry Yard.

Moving on from Sherry, we ended up running into some other food bloggers including Amy from Cooking with Amy, Tracy from Shutterbean, Kamran from Sophisticated Gourmet, Anita from Desserts First, Lisa from Lisa is Bossy and Marcia from Tablehopper. It was like a mini Bay Area Food Blogging reunion (okay, Kamran isn’t from the Bay Area, but I’m not going to hold that against him).

Amy, Sabrina and me. Amy wanted to lay across the car seductively, but the Lexus rep wouldn't let her.

Amy, Sabrina and me. Amy wanted to lay across the car seductively, but the Lexus rep wouldn't let her.

Anita, Lisa, me and Sabrina pretending to be rich and powerful. jpg

Anita, Lisa, me and Sabrina pretending to be rich and powerful.

Tracy of Shutterbean and Kamran of The Sophisticated Gourmet. Don't ask me what Tracy is doing, I have no idea.

Tracy of Shutterbean and Kamran of The Sophisticated Gourmet. Yes, Tracy always looks like that.

As I chatted away with my fellow food bloggers, we wandered about tent sampling some amazing food from some amazing chefs. Prosciutto wrapped melon, seared scallops with microgreens, yellowtail sashimi with lotus root chip, roasted beets with goat cheese, pork belly sliders, the food excellent and seemingly unending.

Pepper encrusted steak at the Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Pepper encrusted steak.

Hoisin pulled pork at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Hoisin pulled pork at Pebble Beach Food and Wine.

Octopus salad at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Octopus salad.

Roasted ruby red beets with microgreens at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Roasted ruby red beets with microgreens.

Pork Belly Sliders at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Pork Belly Sliders.

Seared scallops with microgreens at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Seared scallops with microgreens.

Leopard Shortbread with Pretzels at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Leopard Shortbread with Pretzels.

Smoked duck with goat cheese and edible flowers at the Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Smoked duck with goat cheese and edible flowers.

Salted Caramel candies at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Salted caramel candies at Pebble Beach Food and Wine.

Even more fun to watch was some of the chefs, working fast and hard to impress the rich and fabulous clientele. Taking pictures of them was hard, as they were a blur, working fast to place the tasting samples for impatient and tipsy folks. Luckily walking around with a giant DSLR means I had a good excuse to either tell the chef to slow down for a pic or skip the line and go to the front to just take a hero shot of the chef and the food.

Mark Kiffin of Compound Restaurant. jpg

Chef Mark Kiffin of Compound Restaurant.

Chef Jeremy Tummel of Stillwater Bar & Grill. jpg

Chef Jeremy Tummel of Stillwater Bar & Grill.

Miguel Garcia of Occidental Grand in Aruba. jpg

Chef Miguel Garcia of Occidental Grand in Aruba.

Chef Brian Overhauser, Estate Chef at Hanh Family Vineyard. jpg

Chef Brian Overhauser, Estate Chef at Hanh Family Vineyard.

Chef Mindy Segal of Mindy's Hot Chocolate Restaurant and Dessert Bar. jpg

Chef Mindy Segal of Mindy's Hot Chocolate Restaurant and Dessert Bar.

Chef Michael Ginor of Hudson Valley Foie Gras. jpg

Chef Michael Ginor of Hudson Valley Foie Gras.

Chef Hedy Goldsmith of Michael's Genuine Food & Drink. jpg

Chef Hedy Goldsmith of Michael's Genuine Food & Drink.

Chef Tom Colicchio. I think he's a famous chef or something. jpg

Chef Tom Colicchio. I think he's a famous or something.

Of course, I sort of snuck in back and took a few pics of the hard working chefs behind the scenes working their butts off as well. If anyone ever asks why most chefs are skinny, it’s because they bust ass with crazy hours doing manual labor. Working an event or in a kitchen is tough!

Behind the scenes at the Tasting Pavilion. jpg

Behind the scenes at the Tasting Pavilion at Pebble Beach Food and Wine.

Behind the scenes at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Behind the scenes at the Tasting Pavilion at Pebble Beach Food and Wine.

Behind the scenes at the Tasting Pavilion at Pebble Beach Food and Wine. jpg

Behind the scenes at the Tasting Pavilion at Pebble Beach Food and Wine.

Of course, it wasn’t just the food that people were there for. There were what seemed to be hundreds of wineries and alcohol distillers there presenting their wares as well. From Single Malt Scotches to Vodka to Sparkling Wines to Beer and Reds and Whites (and a few dry roses), the entire gamut was there for us to sample.

The wonderful wine reps from Jermann Winery. jpg

The wonderful wine reps from Jermann Winery (who happens to be pals with Sabrina).

Moët and Chandon

Moët and Chandon

Belvedere's Bloody Mary jpg

Belvedere's Bloody Mary

But you’re probably wondering what inspired my plated dessert. Sabrina and I were rather full from all the rich food and wonderful wine, and as we wandered about, in a bit of a food coma, we turned the corner and saw a table full of small white cups and two women with giant blow torches roasting marshmallows. We immediately had to get in line to grab a couple of them. Turns out it was Miami pastry chef, Hedy Goldsmith of Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink who was serving up Peanut Butter Smores with Bacon Peanut Brittle, Roasted Banana Jam, and Homemade Cocao Nib Marshmallows. I made a mental note that I wanted to do my own take on right after I took my first spoonful. And second spoonful. And third (after which I had to put I down because I really had eaten too much that day).

Chef Hedy Goldsmith toasting a homemade marshmallow. jpg

Chef Hedy Goldsmith toasting a homemade marshmallow.

Cups of Peanut Butter S'Mores. jpg

Cups of Peanut Butter S'Mores with banana jam, waiting to be served up.

The inspiration. jpg

The original inspiration featured cocoa nib marshmallows and banana jam.

After we left the Tasting Pavilion, Sabrina and I got back on the bus, in a completely stupor and headed back for our last session of the day, Fortified: 300 Years of Port with Ramos Pinto. Sabrina and I aren’t heavy drinkers and I knew that afterwards we had to drive two hours back to San Francisco, so I wasn’t so sure that I drinking nine glasses of fortified wine was a good idea. But we walked in the session with my friend Amy Sherman of Cooking with Amy and writer Molly Watson and sat down and looked at the port, in descending vintage order 2007 to 1880.

Hello, 1880? Seriously?

Ramos Pintos jpg

Ramos Pintos

7 glasses of port for my enjoyment. jpg

7 glasses of port for my enjoyment.

Back at the Sustainable Delicacies from the Sea luncheon from yesterday Sabrina and I were seated with the lovely Stephanie (who we saw again at the Port Session) and we conversed about how expensive vintage wine can get. Apparently there is a Pebble Beach Food and Wine Founder’s Dinner that is invite only (apparently my invite got lost in the mail). The ticket to the dinner is $2000 AND you are required to bring a pre-approved Magnum of wine worth $5000 to $30,000. Slightly in awe, I stated I had never sipped wine that was in the four digits or higher. But that apparently changed after this session.

From left to right, front to back in descending age. 2007 to 1880. jpg

From left to right, front to back in descending age. 2007 to 1880.

Not that money is any way to judge wine (I can’t even pronounce the word “oenophile” so don’t look at me to judge wine). But an 1880 bottle of port had to be worth a lot of money I figure. In the end, I sipped each glass of port, enjoying them for what they were. My favorites were in line with Sabrina’s favorites, being the 1994 (nice and juicy without being too raisiny), the 1952 (aromatic vanilla and caramel hints) and the wonderful 1880 with it’s shimmery golden hue. I wondered if the age of the 1880 influenced me, but then I took a sip of the 1884 and decided I really didn’t care of it too much, and it was only four years younger. The 1880 really was sublime with complex nutty fruity flavors all floating together. Turns out there was only seven bottles of the 1880 left in the existence. That said, I was on total port overload by the time we got to the 1880 but there was no way I was going to waste a 230 year old port…so I made Sabrina drink the rest. Ha!

Sabrina taking one for the team. jpg

Sabrina taking one for the team.

The port was a pretty fantastic way to end the weekend. We drove back from a stellar weekend and back to our normal non-fabulous lives (hey, how come no one is serving me three course meals at home? AJ get on that!). But upon arriving back in my dinky one room apartment I decided I needed to reproduce that peanut butter smores dessert, because it’s something that everyone should taste, not just the resort casually dressed people at Pebble Beach.

Sabrina and I will always have Pebble Beach. jpg

Sabrina and I will always have Pebble Beach.

I opted to not make the banana jam mostly because I’m not HUGE banana fan, and though I like it a lot, I knew that it would take some time to make and having a bunch of banana jam around would just be a waste for AJ and myself. On top of that, Chef Hedy Goldsmith found some way to clarify the jam and intensify the banana flavor and not being an expert in jam making, I couldn’t find any resources on how to do that online or in my cookbooks. If anyone knows how to make clarified roasted banana jam (maybe she just uses banana oil?) holler. But I do love strawberries and wanting to simplify things (I know, it’s relative ok?) I made strawberry marshmallows as my fruit counterpoint to the chocolate and peanut butter.

Peanut Butter Smores with Strawberry Marshmallow and Bacon Peanut Brittle. jpg

Peanut Butter Smores with Strawberry Marshmallow and Bacon Peanut Brittle.

The dessert was a certified hit. Every single person who ate it raved about it and AJ declared that it took peanut butter desserts to the next level. I think the idea of peanut butter and chocolate is one of those comfort desserts that is a crowd pleaser, but adding the white chocolate to the peanut butter sweetened it a little as well help keep it firm and adding creating a strawberry marshmallow along with the bacon peanut butter brittle helped add texture and fruit flavors that really did elevate the idea of a “smores” to a dinner party worth dessert. You know a dinner party full of your fancy pants rich friends, or at least your friends pretending to be fancy pants rich, like Sabrina and I did.

Sabrina has a big appetite. jpg

Sabrina has a big appetite.

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Lauren at Keep It Sweet July 1, 2011 at 10:46 am

I am absolutely in love with this recipe!

Reply

Irvin July 2, 2011 at 1:36 am

Thank you so much Lauren. If you make it, let me know how it turns out!

Reply

Shawn July 1, 2011 at 3:31 pm

Complete and utter Mind Crack…
You’re thinking about having seconds before you’ve even had the first bite!

Reply

Irvin July 2, 2011 at 1:33 am

LOL. I served it to a few friends of mine, and as they ate it, halfway through, they looked at me and said “I’m not done with this serving and I think I might want more.”

Reply

Tracy July 1, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Wow. That’s me. Hahaha!

Reply

Irvin July 2, 2011 at 1:34 am

It is! I love your facial expression.

Reply

MikeVFMK July 1, 2011 at 10:10 pm

Irvin, great post and amazing smores/brittle. I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to control my temptation with a plate full of them. Thanks for the Pebble Beach recap, makes me feel like I was there.

Reply

Irvin July 2, 2011 at 1:35 am

I’m so glad you said that. I wanted to invoke the feeling that you were there with me. I like to share my calories virtually…

Reply

annelies July 5, 2011 at 9:35 am

Great recap Irvin. I especially love the goofy shots of Sabrina. :) Looks like Pebble Beach was a good time with good eats!

Reply

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