Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce

Bread Pudding:

  • 1 Cottleston Italian Loaf
  • 4 tbsp butter, melted
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1.5 tsp cinnamon
  • .5 tsp cardamom
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Pull the loaf of bread into small chunks and place in a greased 4+ qt dutch oven or a greased 8.5×11 glass baking dish. Pour meted butter over the bread pieces and gently mix.
  3. Whisk together eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, and vanilla. Pour over bread mixture and gently mix until most of the bread is moist.
  4. Cover cooking vessel with lid or foil and bake at 350º for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Remove when top is toasted and pudding no longer jiggles when shook. Serve warm with caramel sauce.

Caramel Sauce:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla
  1. Add all ingredients to a 2+ quart sauce pan on medium low heat. Whisk together. Stir occasionally until butter is melted and mixture is smooth.
  2. When butter is melted, increase heat to medium and whisk until the sauce thickens.
  3. Serve warm or refrigerate till cold. Sauce will thicken a bit as it sits.

Caramel Sauce recipe adapted from Pioneer Woman’s “Easy Caramel Sauce.”

Wusthof Knife Sharpening and Sales Event – March 24th

Join the Wusthof representative, Fran, for a day all about knives on March 24th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m!

– All regular priced Wusthof knives on sale
– Test out knives before you buy
– Talk with a Wusthof sales rep on knife use and care
– Free-will donation sharpening service ($3-5 per knife suggested)
– All knife types accepted for sharpening except serrated
– Limit of three knives per person
– All donations go to the Harvest Table and Feeding Brookings.

Community Soup Swap – February 8th

February is cold and bleak. Let’s warm it up with delicious soup at our Community Soup Swap event on Thursday, February 8th from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Please bring three family-size batches of soup frozen in separate containers with recipes. For example, you could bring three plastic tubs with four servings of frozen split pea soup in each tub with three recipe copies. Or, you could bring three different soups like four servings of frozen sweet potato chicken noodle in a one gallon plastic baggy, six servings of frozen ginger carrot bisque in a tub, and eight servings of frozen enchilada soup in a baggy (each with a copy of the recipe). Please remember that you will not be getting your container back, so don’t bring Grandma’s *prized* tupperware bowl. We’ll play a little game to start the swap and each participant will leave with three new frozensoups to bring home.

RSVP is not required and there is no cost though you must bring soup in order to participate.

If you have questions, please post them here, message us, or email

Book Club Winter 2018 – Molly on the Range

Please join us for our first ever Cookbook Club at The Carrot Seed starting Tuesday, January 30th! We will be working our way through Molly Yeh’s cookbook, Molly on the Range: Recipes and Stories from an Unlikely Life on a Farm. The club will take place every Tuesday from January 30th to February 27th from 6:30 p.m. till 7:30 p.m. at The Carrot Seed in Downtown Brookings (5 nights). The first night will be an intro and ice breaking night. Each of the four following meetings will focus on one section of the cookbook. Three people will be assigned to each meeting to prepare food from that section of the book to share with the group. Highlights of the club include:

  • Discounted copy of Molly on the Range ($25 vs list price of $32.50)
  • Tasting of unique ingredients used in the book with Dan from Flavor International Cuisine
  • Sampling of food made in the book each week (Attendees will be in charge of preparing/sharing one dish total over the course of the five weeks.)
  • 10% off store merchandise on club evenings
  • Meeting and interacting with other area food lovers
  • A few secret surprises along the way!

The group is limited to 12 participants and we expect the seats to fill quickly. Pre-registration and payment is required to ensure we have a copy of the book ready for you. Membership to the club is $25, which includes a hard cover copy of the book.


Sign up here.


Learn about Molly Yeh here.


Ask questions here:

Spanish Style Gazpacho

Prep Time:  30 Minutes

Cook time:  0 minutes!!

Chill Time:  Up to 6 hours
Total time:  Up to 6 hours, 30 minutes

Difficulty Level:  Easy
Serves: 4-6
Modified from this recipe on Epicurious




10 oz. of day old bread, crust removed
21 oz. of fresh summer tomatoes, seeds removed, chopped
1 tsp Ellbee’s Original Garlic blend
1 medium sweet onion chopped
2 red bell peppers, chopped
1 cucumber, peeled and seeds removed, chopped
1/2 tsp. ground Cumin
8 tablespoons of good Spanish Olive oil, extra virgin
2 tablespoons of good Spanish Sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons cold water, or more as needed


1 cucumber, peeled and finely diced, for garnish

Sour Cream, for garnish
Croutons (preferably homemade, optional) or crostini (grilled bread drizzled with extra virgin olive oil)

Cracked Peppercorns


In a bowl, soak the bread in 1/2 – 1 cup of water for 10 min. Squeeze out, by hand, as much water as possible from the bread.

In a food processor (a Vitamix purees everything quickly and like a dream!) puree all the chopped vegetables.  Add the cumin, garlic, the soaked bread, sherry vinegar, olive oil and 2 Tbsp cold water. Puree in the food processor until the mixture is entirely pureed and smooth. Add more cold water if needed to get the right consistency; it should be slightly thick but should pour easily. Add salt to taste (start with 1-2 tsp).

Refrigerate at least 2 hours and re-taste for salt.

Serve chilled with garnish of chopped cucumber, cracked peppercorns, and/or croutons as desired.  You can also serve with crostini.

Strawberry Salsa with Cinnamon Sugar Chips

Strawberry Salsa with Cinnamon Sugar Chips

Prep time:  10 minutes
Cook time:  10 minutes
Total time:  20 mins
Serves: 4 servings

1 pint strawberries, hulled and finely diced

2 kiwi, peeled and finely diced

1 Granny Smith apple – finely chopped
1 jalapeno, stem and seeds removed, finely diced
Half of a small red onion, peeled and finely diced (about 1/2 cup)
2/3 cup finely-chopped fresh cilantro, loosely-packed
Juice of 2 limes, about 4 tablespoons
¼ tsp salt

1 tsp Golden Fig brand basil pepper

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 flour tortillas (10 inches in diameter)

PS – if you don’t want to make your own – there are pre-packed cinnamon-sugar chips (Stacy’s pita chips) that are also delicious, or you could use a variety of graham crackers for dipping.  

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  

Combine strawberries, kiwi, granny smith apple, jalapeno, red onion, and cilantro.  In a small bowl combine lime juice, salt and basil pepper – whisk to combine.  Pour over salsa and mix until combined.  Taste for seasoning – add additional salt and pepper, if needed.  Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  This can be made a day ahead of time and refrigerated overnight. 

In a small bowl combine cinnamon and sugar.  Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside. Brush top of first tortilla with melted butter.  Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture.  Cut with a pizza cutter in half, then each half into 4 segments; you should have 8 wedges from each tortilla.  Arrange wedges in a single layer on baking sheet.  Bake until crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Repeat with any remaining chips.  Let chips cool before serving.  Serve with chilled fruit salsa.  

Veggie Noodle Lo Mein

Prep time:  20 minutes

Cook time:  20 minutes

Total time:  40 mins

Serves: 4 servings


  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 baby bok choy, or 1 large bok choy, thoroughly washed, thinly sliced
  • 1 large red bell pepper, thinly sliced length-wise
  • 1 large carrot, peeled, ends removed and spiralized into noodles.  If your carrots aren’t big enough to spiralize thinly slice
  • 8 oz mushrooms.  I prefer baby portobello or crimini mushrooms, washed and sliced
  • 4-8 zucchini (around 2 lbs), spiralized into noodles – I find the medium size works best, but you could also do the fine or angel hair size
  • 1 tsp sea salt


  • 3 tsp Ellbee’s Asian Zing Garlic
  • 3 Tablespoons ginger, minced
  • Whites of the green onions sliced below


  • 1 ½ Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 ½ Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon mirin
  • 2 tsp brown sugar


  • 1 bunch of green onions, thinly sliced.  Separate the sliced greens from the whites.  Use the whites in the aromatics above, reserve the greens for topping at the end



  1. Make sure all your veggies are prepped before starting the stir fry.
  2. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and soy sauce until cornstarch is dissolved.  Add in sesame oil, mirin and brown sugar.  Set aside
  3. Preheat a very large skillet (at least 15″) over medium high heat. When the pan is hot but not smoking, add 1 Tablespoon of the olive oil into the pan along with the garlic, ginger, and whites of the green onions.  Stir fry for 1-2 minutes until fragrant and the green onions have wilted.  
  4. Increase heat to high.  Add mushrooms and stir fry for 3-4 minutes.  Add bok choy, bell pepper, and carrots. Stir fry for an additional 4-5 minutes, or until the veggies are starting to soften.
  5. Transfer the stir fried veggies to a large serving bowl
  6. Place the stir fry pan back over high heat, and add the remaining 1 Tablespoon of oil to the pan. Add the zucchini noodles to the pan and stir fry just until the noodles are beginning to soften, around 5 minutes.  Drain off the excess liquid.  
  7. Add the veggie mixture to the noodles and toss completely to combine. Add the salt and sauce mixture, stir to coat and simmer for approximately 5 minutes.   Taste and adjust seasonings.  Remove the pan from the heat.
  8. Transfer to serving bowl, top with the greens portion of the sliced green onions, and serve. 


  • You can easily add a cooked protein (chicken, shredded pork, etc) if desired.  Add the cooked protein in Step 4 with the mushrooms and other vegetables.  

Cucumber, Strawberry, and Avocado Salsa

Cucumber, Avocado, and Strawberry Salsa

  • 1 large Seedless Cucumber
  • 1 cup hulled and chopped strawberries
  • 1 ripe avocado, diced
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 small jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped purple onion
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Spiralize cucumber, cutting noodles every turn. Or, you can chop the noodles after they are spiralized.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together honey, lime juice, and salt & pepper to taste. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl mix cucumber noodles, strawberries, avocados, cilantro, jalapeno, and onion.
  4. Stir in sauce. Serve with chips.

DIY “Chopped” Challenge

Recently, I was able to cross something off of my bucket list that I didn’t think would ever be possible:
I competed in a “Chopped” Challenge!

If you watch The Food Network at all, you have most likely heard about their hit show “Chopped”. But, in case you haven’t, here’s a quick run down.
The show starts with four contestants who are given a basket of mystery ingredients they must use to make an appetizer within a certain amount of time (see: not enough time). They have an unlimited pantry to use to complete the course, and judges to score their meals after time is up. The chef who makes the worst appetizer is “chopped”, and the remaining three repeat the process to create a main dish. One chef gets chopped, and the last two battle to make a dessert with more mystery ingredients.
The items in the basket must appear in the dish they are making, or they are deducted points.
The mystery ingredients are often a combination of things that do not easily go well together, or processed food you wouldn’t normally cook with! And the time constraints are always a little tight, so the chefs are running around trying to get everything done in time! The winner is awarded a cash prize and bragging rights 🙂

I have watched many, MANY episodes, and it always looks like something that would be exciting to try! The show sometimes has amateur chefs as competitors, but that’s no where near what my comfort level is at… But, it didn’t look impossible to try to recreate for your own kitchen! No one has an unlimited pantry, though, or a big enough budget to create one. And kitchen space? That’s just asking for trouble. So, I recruited the help of some brave friends to help me figure out how we could do this ourselves! The following plan is how we were able to finally pull it off!

How to Throw Your Own Chopped Challenge:

Pick the friend with the largest kitchen and most open floor plan. Designate the pantry space and the table for extra supplies (pans, plates, odd utensils, etc.) Divide common utensils, bowls, pans, and cutting boards evenly between two workstations. Set the oven to 350* as a universal baking temperature to prevent wasting time waiting for it to preheat. Also, be sure to have other spare cooking utensils out and open, to prevent digging through cabinets and wasting time (baking pans, cookie sheets, blenders/food processors). You will want to make sure there are enough dishes to present with. Various sizes of plates and bowls would be helpful. I ended up bringing about half of my kitchen supplies, to ensure we had enough of the basics. Since you are doing ALL of the cooking before you sit down to eat, be sure to plan ahead for timing. We arrived at their house around 4:30, so that we could begin cooking by 5:00pm.

Next, draw names to determine who will be competing! You will choose two people who will each complete two courses, and appetizer and main dish. If you have extra people, you can designate one person per competitor to be a sous chef to help with chopping and stirring. As a group, discuss who has various cooking tools and staple ingredients, so you can all pitch in for that. Our pantry area was quite full, and included lots of duplicates! But, it made cooking SO much easier.
Each person/couple should bring one protein (meat, beans, yogurt, etc.) and three carbohydrates (fruits, veggies, starches, etc.)

Basket Ingredients:
Those not competing will gather together the proteins and carbohydrates each person/couple brought for basket ingredients. They will select two proteins and two carbohydrates for the appetizer course, and two proteins and four carbohydrates for the main course. Divide the amount of each ingredient evenly between each competitor and keep it a secret for them to unveil right before they start cooking.

Appetizer Course:
Competitors will open up their first basket (or reusable grocery bag, like we used…). We took five minutes to plan out how we were going to use our ingredients. Then, they will have 45 minutes to complete their dish. They must have it on the plate before the 45 minutes are up, or they will be docked points.
Here’s what happened in our appetizer course: Our basket ingredients were vanilla greek yogurt (which was supposed to be plain greek yogurt, but I don’t believe that… ;), pork chops, corn tortillas, and gummy worms. Seriously.
I ended up with a taco with seasoned pork, cilantro lime rice, lettuce, onions, tomatoes, and topped with a yogurt sauce with melted gummy worms in it.
Our friend Jack made a taco with spicy pork and onions, and on the side he had a gummy worm and yogurt salad. It was a close call on time, but it made it more exciting!

I’m contemplating hard about melting a gummy worm and mixing it with the yogurt!

Amy and Jack working on his tacos














Those who aren’t cooking will become judges. Each contestant will present their dish to the judges, everyone can eat and enjoy while the judges ask questions about the dish. Then, every one pitches in to do some dishes to get ready for the next round.

Main Course:
Competitors are given their basket of secret ingredients. For this round, they will have 60 minutes to complete a main course. Since there was so much time, we decided against the planning period.
Here’s how our main dish round went: Our baskets included spinach, kiwi, green pepper, shredded cheese (one basket had cheddar, one had mozzarella. We were told to share if needed), zucchini, and kielbasa sausage.
I made stuffed peppers with the sausage, cheese, zucchini, and I added some potatoes and spices. The spinach and kiwi went into a blender to make a sauce to dip the stuffing into.
Jack made rings out of the peppers and filled them with the zucchini and sausage combined with honey and mozzarella. Then, he mixed the spinach with the kiwi, an orange, and a fruit cup to go on the side.










The main dishes get presented to the judges. Then, the judges can go deliberate and decide on a winner!

ABOVE ALL, have fun with it!! Don’t stress about if your cooking is awful or not. You’re all trying something new together, and your friends or family will have agreed to participate, so they should know what they are getting into 😉

What do you think? Would you try this? What changes would you make?