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‘Happy Accidents.' How One Filipino-American Baker Made Something Magical, and is Now Serving Sunday's Big Game

"Happy accidents": An accidental pie-baking blunder turned out to be a best-selling treat at Crème Caramel LA that will sweeten Super Bowl Sunday at the VIP Tailgate Party.

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

Super Bowl Sunday is hardly complete without indulgent finger foods and stories of triumph. Kristine de la Cruz, owner of Filipino-American bakery Crème Caramel LA, has both in spades.

Before de la Cruz was selling out of her “upside down pies,” she was only making ends meet selling traditional Filipino pies, custards and bread puddings over a decade ago. 

Her luck changed when, on a particularly busy day, she baked a batch of custard-based mini-pies for too long. Not wanting to waste food, de la Cruz salvaged the pies by sprinkling the well-done crust on top of the custard. 

She brought the newly-tokened “upside down pies” to the farmers market and, to her surprise, they sold out. 

Despite her mounting success since then, de la Cruz says her motive is not money.

I’d like to be able to let people know about our culture, through food, as best as we can.

Kristine de la Cruz 

She continued to pursue this dream when she applied for the Super Bowl LVI Business Connect Program, the NFL’s way to scout LA County businesses to help supply the game. 


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Presenting only one flavor at the audition, de la Cruz landed the opportunity. 

She will be serving celebrities, athletes and possibly food executives at the game’s “VIP Tailgate Party.”

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