The Pillsbury Bakeoff: These cookies taste like a million bucks

  • Updated: April 16, 2008 - 3:22 PM

Edgar Rudberg from Saint Paul, MN, poses with his Salmon Pastries with Dill Pesto.

Photo: Greg Nelson, Pillsbury/General Mills

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Carolyn Gurtz of Gaithersburg, Md., took home top honors -- and $1 million -- at the 2008 Pillsbury Bake-Off Tuesday for her Double-Delight Peanut Butter Cookies.

Gurtz also received the Jif Peanut Butter Award, which recognizes the best recipe using Jif peanut butter, adding another $5,000 to her winnings.

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He wasn't the $1 million winner, but Edgar Rudberg and his recipe for Salmon Pastries With Dill Pesto did win the Bake-Off's "Entertaining Appetizers" category.

Rudberg, of St. Paul, will receive $5,000 and a GE Profile oven. The 29-year-old is a doctoral student at the University of Minnesota in natural resources science and management and runs a company, Verdi Strategies, that refurbishes 55-gallon drums into rain barrels.

Rudberg entered the contest on a whim with a recipe he'd made only once. His recipe was based on a variation of salmon Wellington, which he turned into small dumplings of pie crust filled with the fish and dill sauce. Hear Rudberg chat with Rick Nelson at

For a complete list of finalists and their recipes, go to

Other winners: Breakfast & Brunches, Mascarpone-Filled Cranberry-Walnut Rolls; Pizza Creations, Apple-Jack Chicken Pizza With Caramelized Onions; Old El Paso Mexican Favorites, Mexican Pesto-Pork Tacos; America's Favorite Recipe, Toffee-Banana Brownies; GE Imagination At Work Award, Blue Cheese and Red Onion Jam Crescent Thumbprints.

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