Hye Thyme Cafe: Review - Tiny Food Party! by Teri Lyn Fisher & Jenny Park

Welcome to the Hy
e Thyme Cafe. Although not all of my recipes are Armenian, the name is a little nod to my Armenian grandmother who is no longer with us. The Hye refers to all things related to her homeland, and she represents all things food-related to me, so the two just seemed to go together. I can't even claim that my Armenian recipes are truly Armenian, since Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon, Syria, and even Egypt share so many foods that they've all sort of morphed into one over thousands of years.

Whether you like to cook, bake, have never done either, or just like to play with your food...come on in and join me! :)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Review - Tiny Food Party! by Teri Lyn Fisher & Jenny Park

When first presented with the opportunity to review a copy of Tiny Food Party!, I was very excited.  For anyone who has been reading along with me for a while now, you know that our family Christmas Eve tradition is to serve appetizers and desserts, so I'm always looking for new mini/app ideas.  My sister and I will also on occasion get together with some friends before heading out to a comedy show or giving them a cooking demo or something and will aim for finger foods then as well. This seemed to be right up my alley, yet I found myself putting it down over and over again, dreading this post and hoping I would come back to it with fresh eyes.  I guess I did finally ... sort of.  I have decided that I am just not the target audience for this particular cookbook.  It happens.  

If you're a blogger or have been a "foodie" for a while now, you might want to skip this one.  If, however, you are relatively new to the kitchen or are just getting into party mode, this might be exactly what you need! The book is full of fun tiny treats, and they even mastered one of my favorites that I have completely botched twice and haven't gotten back to again - Mochi Ice Cream Balls.  If you haven't had them before, it's a must!  It's almost like eating ice cream inside of a marshmallow.  I always leave room for dessert at our local Japanese restaurants so I can get them.  I understand that Trader Joe's sells them, but we don't have one here.  {bummer}

You see, as excited as I was to get my flour and egg dusted paws on this book, when I first flipped through it, it immediately stuck me as cliché.  I felt as though I was scrolling through my Google Reader feed for the past two years' worth of other people's blog posts.  Caprese Skewers, Scones, cucumber cups, Mac 'n Cheese Bites ... that's all stuff you can find right here, and a million other places.  Where is the innovation?  What makes this tiny food stand apart from any other?  I have no idea.  Crostini?  We have that on an average night!  If there had been a single cake pop or macaron in this book, I probably would have burned it on the spot!  

I then went completely off the rails and somehow managed to take it personally (as a Bostonian) when faced with Boston Cream Cakes that included whipped cream in the filling and a buttercream frosting, not to mention that it called for using round cutters to cut circles from sheet cakes when there doesn't appear to be a cut edge in the lot!  I know, it's called food styling, but let's keep it real folks.  Chris, put the book down and walk away ...

OK, deep breaths ... I'm back.  On 9th glance, something intriguing caught my eye; something completely new to me on all levels - Teeny Sweet Corn Ice Cream Tacos.  (What???)  Tiny deep fried corn tortillas (Yum!) filled with homemade Sweet Corn Ice Cream (Ooh?), and topped with Candied Corn (Huh??? Man that sounds good!).  It's killing me not to try this one.  Well, I suppose I could, but I don't have an ice cream maker and corn season here is at the beginning of August, so I'll be eagerly anticipating trying this one over the summer.  Heck, I'll probably make a "practice run" to try out the candied corn with whatever fresh corn I can get in the meantime.  It's a super easy recipe, and they suggest using it on these ice cream tacos in addition to sprinkled on salads and other savory dishes.  My mind is racing already - trying to taste them so I know what I might want to pair them with.

The back of the book offers up teeny cocktail options to accompany your tiny bites.  After that section, I thought I had finally hit gold ... the very last page of the book offered up something new and different - a link to the publisher's website where you could download themed menus, templates for tiny party decorations, share photos of your own tiny food party, join the conversation, and much more.  The problem with that? The menus - eh, the templates - nonexistent.  It's a dead link.  If the book came out in October, you would think someone would have noticed that by now?? The photo sharing is on Pinterest, which is cool - I'm a Pinterest junkie. I see nothing relating to conversation, and I'm assuming the "much more" is a link called More Recipes that is really a link to three of the recipes in the book.  Sooo, if you want to  sample a few of the recipes you'll find in Tiny Food Party!, check out the More Recipes tab at QuirkBooks.com/TinyFoodParty for One-Bite "Onion" Rings, Super-Small Deep-Dish Pizzas, and Mini Homemade Pop Tarts.  Just don't look there for pictures of those things - you'll need the book for that.

By the way, Teri Lyn Fisher and Jenny Park are the ladies behind the popular food blog (of which I'm a follower) Spoon Fork Bacon.  Maybe that's my problem - I'm such a fan of their blog, I had too high expectations for the book??  Sorry ladies!  I'm sure you worked very hard on it, but I just don't get this one.  

Here's a random sampling of the recipes you will find in Tiny Food Party:

Tiny Potato Salad Bites
Roasted Red Pepper Aioli
Baby Bolinhos de Bacalhua (cod fritters)
Beef Empanadas
Miniature Meat Loaves
Little Lamb Sliders
Li'l Stuffed French Toasts
Mini Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches
Li'l Homemade Hostess Cupcakes
Tiny Fried Apple Pies
Itty-Bitty Bloody Marys
Mini Orange Creamsicles
Bitty Ginger-Mint Lemonades

Whether full-sized or bite-sized is your preference, party on foodies!!!

A review copy of Tiny Food Party was provided to me by Quirk Books.  As always, my opinions are strictly my own.  In the event that you ever questioned that, I'm fairly certain you believe it now. Gotta tell it like it is - even when it comes to my own kitchen nightmares.

Pick up a copy of Tiny Food Party! at:

Share your own tiny creations on the Tiny Food Party! Pinterest Board.

If you're not already a fan, be sure to check out the wonderful recipes and beautiful photography at Spoon Fork Bacon!  You can also find them on Twitter and Facebook.


  1. Thanks for the great review. I thought it looked interesting but will not buy it & keep playing on Pintrest!

    1. Of course, I'm not suggesting that nobody should buy the book, but it seemed to me that most of what was in it is what has been going around all the blogs the past few years. That may be a reason why someone WOULD want to get it - one-stop shopping. :) Definitely check out their blog though!


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