Fall is Here!

October 7, 2014

Rose 4I heard you missed me.  How sweet of some of you to notice!!!!  It may not be much of an excuse but it was a really busy summer for my family and me.  All three of my children went away to school this fall, so we spent a lot of time preparing for and physically making it happen.  My daughter Sarah (some of you may remember her as my photographer and a server this summer) left in August for Bard College in Upstate New York.  Her twin brother, Jake, is now at UC Santa Barbara.  And their older brother Zach, who had been going to school locally for the past couple of years, is now at UC Santa Cruz.  They are living and studying at incredibly beautiful and stimulating places.  I feel so lucky, and grateful that they have the opportunity to pursue their interests and passions and create bright futures for themselves.  In these turbulent times, it is such a privelege, although they worked really hard to get there and I'm so proud of them!

At LA Food Works, we are proud to introduce our new menu!  I designed it so there's a little something for everyone.  It's got some comfort food, some world cuisine, some really healthy options and, of course, decadent desserts! In the next three issues, I will be profiling a recipe that reminds me of each of my children.  So keep a look out in your inbox.  I promise I will write more regularly since I've got lots of newly freed up time on my hands.

Have a look below to see our new
Fall-Winter Menu or click here and check it out on our website.  There is also a "Sarah-will-love-this" recipe and a tip on how to make a quick cream sauce that will carry you through the upcoming holidays.   

Speaking of the holidays... As they approach, keep us in mind for your entertaining needs.  We can accommodate parties of 10 to 150 guests. An LAFW event is a fun way to bring people together and cooking is a great activity for all.  Keep in touch with all the goings-on in the LAFW kitchen by clicking onto our Facebook page and becoming a fan.

Wishing you all a wonderful start to fall and I'm looking forward to cooking with you soon!


LA Food Works
Fall-Winter 2014 Menu

LA Food Works is proud to present its new Fall/Winter 2014 Menu! Our signature interactive, hands-on cooking events are ideal for holiday parties, team building exercises, client entertaining and the celebration of any special occasion!

 10.14An LA Food Works Event Includes
* Hors d'oeuvre and beverage reception on arrival
* Fun and knowledgeable chef instructors to guide you through your recipes
* Private cooking and dining experience at our charming venues
* Seasonal gourmet menu selections for lunch, brunch or dinner
* Chef aprons to use while you are cooking
* Recipe packets for everyone to take home             Photo by: Tommy Bellissimo

    Entreé Course Selections 

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with a Four-Way Apple Sauce
(This option can be made with pork and/or chicken)
Roasted Mushroom Salad with Hazelnuts and Manchego
Cauliflower Bread Pudding
Sautéed Mustard Greens and Sweet Potatoes with Maple Vinaigrette

Braised Chicken with Dates and Moroccan Spices
Arugula and Fennel Salad with Pomegranate Molasses Dressing
Fire Roasted Moroccan Carrots with Tahini
Rice and Orzo Pilaf with Almonds and Apricots

Cumin and Coffee Rubbed Grilled Tri Tip
(This option can be made with steak, chicken and/or salmon)
Chiffonade of Mixed Greens and Chopped Vegetables with Buttermilk Dressing
Brussels Sprouts and Pearl Onions with Crispy Pancetta
Parsnip, Potato and Turnip Purée

 Salmon en Croûte with Fennel Compote
(This option can be made with salmon and/or chicken)
Apple and Escarole Salad with Blue Cheese and Pecans
Kale with Garlic and Cranberries
Spinach and Comte Soufflés

  Beef Potpies with Crispy Cheddar Crust
Red-Leaf and Celery Salad with Caraway-Seed Dressing
Green Beans with an Herb Compound Butter
Gin Braised Sauerkraut

 Dessert Selections

Maple-Walnut Tart with Vanilla Ice Cream

Dark Chocolate Soufflés with Cardamom Crème Anglaise 

Buttermilk Spice Cake with Pear Compote and Crème Fraiche 

Pumpkin Bread Pudding with Gingered Cream Sauce 

Chocolate-Cherry Crumb Bars a la Mode

Pumpkin Bread Pudding with
Gingered Crème Anglaise 

This dessert screams Sarah to me.  We both have a sweet tooth and a love of bread pudding but she also adores any dish with pumpkin in it...either, savory or sweet!  She loves Pumpkin Ravioli and Risotto as well as Pumpkin Pie, Cheesecake and a wonderful Pumpkin Tiaramisu I often make this time of year.  This bread pudding will not disappoint when I make it for her over Thanksgiving break.  The yummy pudding combines with a generous dose of pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spices.  To top it off, the Gingered Creme Anglaise is just the right touch to bring this comfort food to the next level.  Featured on our new Fall-Winter Menu, it's the perfect way to celebrate fall!

1 1/2 cups whole milk
cup canned pumpkin puree
cup sugar
whole eggs
egg yolk
teaspoon salt
1 1/2
teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/8 teaspooon ground cloves
2 tablespoons amaretto, or brandy or bourbon (optional)                          
cups day old or toasted bread cubes

Gingered Creme Anglaise
cup milk
cup heavy whipping cream
teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.

Whisk together pumpkin, cream, milk, sugar, eggs, yolk, salt, spices and, bourbon (if using), in a bowl.

Toss bread cubes with butter in another bowl, then add pumpkin mixture and toss to coat.  Let mixture sit for 15 minutes so bread absorbs the liquid then divide mixture evenly between ramekins and bake until custard is set, about 25-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the sauce.  In medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat, heat milk, cream, ginger and vanilla until mixture is hot and begins to boil slightly, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.

While mixture is heating, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until smooth. Slowly pour 1/3 cup of hot milk mixture into egg yolks, whisking constantly. This is to temper the mixture so that the eggs do not cook when combining two temperatures. Gradually add egg yolk mixture back to remaining milk mixture in pot, whisking constantly. Return pot to the stove, and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture coats the back of a spoon. Do not boil or sauce may curdle. Set aside, uncovered.

When ready to serve, pour creme anglaise over warm pudding. 

Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, October 2007
Serves 8.  Per Serving: 461 Calories; 27g Fat (53.2% calories from fat); 9g Protein; 45g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 230mg Cholesterol; 509mg Sodium.

NOTES : If you don't have day old bread, simply spread bread cubes on a baking sheet and toast in a low oven (250-275F) for 20 minutes, stirring once in between.

Can be made in a 9x9 baking dish. Melt butter in the bottom of baking dish while oven is heating up, then remove from heat and toss bread cubes with butter, coating thoroughly.  Pour pumpkin mixture over buttered bread cubes in baking dish, stirring to make sure all pieces are evenly coated. Bake until custard is set, 40 to 50 minutes.

 A Crème Anglaise Shortcut

Creme Anglaise

Creme Anglaise sounds really fancy, and it is!  As you see in the above recipe, it's a rich blend of cream, eggs, sugar and vanilla.  But did you know, it's also the mixture that is churned and frozen to make French Vanilla Ice Cream?  That's right, it is!  So...if you want a quick short cut to a beautiful dessert sauce, just melt some very good quality French Vanilla Ice Cream.  You can heat it in a sauce pan over a very low flame on the stove.  Add some seasoning, like ground ginger or cinnamon and warm it through so the flavors meld to give the sauce a little twist.  You can also just put it on the counter or in the refigerator to melt.  When ready to serve, spoon some on the bottom of a plate and top it with a slice of flourless chocolate cake or a delicious tart (you can then spoon some more sauce on top if you want... just a suggestion).  The possibilities are endless!

WANT TO USE THESE TIPS AND RECIPES IN YOUR E-ZINE, BLOG OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you do not alter the information in any way and include a credit that reads "by Rose LeBoeuf, www.lafoodworks.com, Interactive Cooking Classes, Parties, and Corporate Team Building Events for Groups Looking for a Fun and Unique Dinning Experience." 

 LA Food Works Events 

 Ideal for Team Building, Holiday Parties, Client Entertaining, Birthday Parties, Showers and Private Gatherings. 
Let LA Food Works make your party one which your guests will not soon forget!
No previous cooking experience required!
Just willingness to put on an apron,
get your hands a little messy,
indulge in some great food
and have lots of fun playing in the kitchen!
We also happily design Custom Cooking Parties. If you have a group of 10 or more foodies who love great food and playing together in the kitchen, contact us and we will design a custom menu or theme class for you and your group.

Our interactive cooking parties both unify and entertain...perfect for any occasion that requires great food, interesting activities and lots of fun!


For information or to book your event, contact Rose LeBoeuf at 310-288-0100 for an event planning kit, pricing and availability.