When it comes to wacky ingredients, you may not have to look further than your own pantry.
At least that's the case for chef Billy Klein, who heads the kitchen at Café Saint-Ex in Washington, D.C. The ever-imaginative toque, who admits to dabbling with cereal dishes since his early 20s (he's now 31), recently introduced a new grilled Tallegio cheese sandwich with shaved apples at his restaurant.
The twist? The bread is crusted with crushed Fruity Pebbles.
"Cooking with cereal is, you know, it's fun. It's like being a kid again," Klein told HuffPost. That said, not everyone thought the combo was a good idea at the start. "Everybody was against me on it at first," he explained. "My wife thought I was a little crazy, my executive sous chef was like, 'That's going to be weird.' And I was like, I've got to try it! And it worked out pretty good."
Klein isn't the first to experiment with sugary morning cereals. Chef and television personality Sam Zien visited "The Today Show" a few years back to share his recipe for Cap'n Crunch-seared tuna. His reasoning is based a bit more on practicality than Klein: "I like to try and use things for more than one purpose," Zien told host Al Roker. "Dollars go further, you're not throwing junk out, it's all very good."
The Planet Hollywood chain also allegedly uses Cap'n Crunch and Corn Flakes cereals in its popular long-standing dish, "World Famous Chicken Crunch."
Click through the below slideshow for a peek at other chef-created cereal concoctions.
Cafe Saint-Ex in Washington, D.C. uses crushed Fruity Pebbles to crust its grilled Tallegio cheese sandwich with shaved apples.
The menu always changes at Wolvesden, the secret 13-course supper club in Los Angeles run by former Thomas Keller employee Craig Thornton. But check out this offering from 2010: Cereal milk ice cream with a brown-butter-coffee treat of puffed rice. Photo by Flickr user djjewelz.
Momofuku Milk Bar, the brain child of celebrated chef David Chang, is famous for its ice creams infused with cereal. The wildly popular cereal milk ice cream is available all the time, but be on the lookout for other flavors available for a limited time, like Lucky Charms soft serve, seen here. They recipes are all dreamed up by Momofuku pastry chef Christina Tosi. Photo by Flickr user rachelkramerbusseldotcom.
Mad Donna's in Nashville has a sweet secret that makes its French toast really pop: Cap'n Crunch cereal. Photo by Flickr user kthread.
Planet Hollywood could arguably be the world leader in cooking with cereal. The chain has supposedly been cooking up chicken tenders breaded with pulverized Cap'n Crunch and corn flake cereal for years. Although the cereals aren't mentioned on the restaurant's website, they're detailed in this 1995 recipe in the Orlando Sentinel, which was provided by then executive chef Jeff Weiss. Photo by Flickr user msminx00.
Here's chef and television personality Sam Zien on a visit to "The Today Show" a few years ago. Zien showed host Al Roker how to make his original dish, Cap'n Crunch seared tuna. The recipe appeared in his book, "Sam the Cooking Guy: Just a Bunch of Recipes."
Halo-halo, a popular Filipino dessert made with shaved ice, evaporated milk and a variety of toppings, gets a modern update at "Top Chef" star Dale Talde's Brooklyn eatery, Talde. Look closely: It's topped with Cap'n Crunch cereal. Photo by Yelp user Stan L.
Photo by Flickr user Stuart Conner.