We know "Mom knows best" and apparently Michelle Bernstein does too. She is serving up her mother's baked goods at her new café, Crumb on Parchment. But is mom to credit for Michelle's skills? Short Order talked with Martha Bernstein and found out that when it comes to cooking, it's clearly a family affiar.
New Times: How did you begin baking?
Martha Bernstein: I've always baked since my kids were in grade school. I started when they were born and it went on and on and on. I'm not a great baker. I like to bake but I also like to cook regular food.
What's your favorite thing to cook?
Italian food. I come from Argentina where lots of the food is Italian influenced. With the exception of barbeque meat, everything else is Italian.
what is your favorite thing to bake?
I really love to make bundt cakes,
like the Upside-Down Chocolate Carrot Cake. I've been making all styles
for Crumb -- coconut cake, lemon curd butter cake with butter frosting.
Every week I have a demand for the German chocolate cake. That, the
carrot cake with orange frosting and the coconut cake are city
favorites. I think people prefer the frosted cake because it's more old
Why did you decide to take part
in Crumb on Parchment?
Michelle asked me if I could bake the
old-style cakes like the coconut cake that I made many times for them in
the past. I thought I could, and it developed into making cakes twice a
week according to the demand. It's so freshly opened that we're trying
to bring the cakes that people want and prefer.
Does Michelle get her skills
She says so but I wouldn't say it. She
says she got the inspiration from me but she has learned so much,
worked so hard and learned way past my knowledge.
What is your favorite dish of
My favorite is Michelle's food -- all
of it. But I love the way she prepares fish. She makes fish really
really beautifully. Better than anyone I know. She started years ago
with fish French style but she developed into a great fish cook and does
other things very well. I love all the food at Michy's and small dishes
at Sra. Martinez. Her food is so delicate.
How are you celebrating
Since Michelle is working on Mother's
Day we are all getting together for breakfast at my other daughter's
house, the one belonging to Nicolette, who designed Michy's and Sra.
Martinez. It's going to be very light because we are not big breakfast
eaters -- bagels, cream cheese and nova, probably scrambled eggs with
cream cheese and chives. I'm also making an apple strudel with whipped
cream on the side.
So the restaurants are kind of a
Yes. We are a very close-knit family.
Not a very big family here in Miami because the rest of my family is in
Argentina and my husband's family is in Minnesota -- but here we are