Eggland’s Best Pink Party for Breast Cancer Awareness | Savory Sourdough Bread Pudding {and a giveaway}

All my life, the month of October has held special meaning for me. It goes beyond pumpkins and trick or treating, although that, of course, is a big part of it. You see, October 30th is my mother’s birthday. And 17 years ago, I lost…

Eggland’s Best Pink Party for Breast Cancer Awareness | Savory Sourdough Bread Pudding {and a giveaway}

All my life, the month of October has held special meaning for me. It goes beyond pumpkins and trick or treating, although that, of course, is a big part of it. You see, October 30th is my mother’s birthday. And 17 years ago, I lost my mother to breast cancer. For me, October belongs to her.

For as long as the inception of National Breast Cancer Awareness month (this year marks its 26th anniversary) breast cancer has been a part of my life. My earliest memories of my own awareness include that weekly car ride with my mother to her chemotherapy treatments, doing homework in the car as she endured the chemicals that fought on her behalf. The hours she spent tending her garden, perhaps the best therapy of all. The first time she put on that wig, and how it ended up askew after a ride on Space Mountain. The mastectomy scar, purple and deep. Those years of remission, when we traveled the world, savoring every day that we were given. Learning that the disease returned. Injecting her in the thigh when she couldn’t do it herself. Saying goodbye.

Breast cancer awareness is something that I can not ignore, so when Eggland’s Best invited me to participate in their Eggland’s Best Double Dozen, I could not refuse. To help raise awareness, I was asked to host an #EBPink Party, a brunch or a brinner for the dearest women in my life; in return, a $100 donation would be made in my name to support Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Of course, I said yes.

For my “brinner” I invited mothers and daughters. This was so important to me, how I wanted to do it – I want all of you to remember that special relationship between mothers and daughters this month. My daughter and I invited the friends we have developed together, and it was a lovely way to spend a little extra time with the women and girls who mean so much to us.


For this meal, I wanted to highlight, of course, the eggs. Such a good source of protein and vitamins, and in this dish, a lot of comfort too. I think you will really enjoy this Savory Sourdough Bread Pudding. Rich with mushrooms and a chicken apple sausage, it makes the perfect brunch food, leaving you time to enjoy your guests. And that is what this is all about.


Please scroll down for the giveaway and disclaimer details.

Eggland’s Best Pink Box Giveaway

EB is proud to support Susan G. Komen for the Cure® (SGK), and for the second year in a row, EB will turn its iconic red EB stamp pink and include the SGK pink ribbon on all their eggs. Starting September 15th through November 15th, for every pink carton of Eggland’s Best eggs sold, a donation will be made to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure up to $50,000. Enter to win an Eggland’s Best Pink Box with cooking utensils and goodies. Here’s how:

  • Please leave a comment below and feel free to share an inspiring comment or tell me how you contribute to raise awareness or funding for breast cancer.
  • Entries/Comments accepted until 10 pm Pacific, Friday, 28 October, 2011.
  • One winner will be randomly selected and notified by email.
  • This contest is open to US residents only, my apologies to my international friends!

FTC: As part of the Eggland’s Best Double Dozen, Eggland’s Best has compensated me and provided a “Pink Box” to help host my EBPink Party, as well as made a $100 donation to Susan G. Komen for the Cure in my name. They will also provide one giveaway winner with an Eggland’s Best “Pink Box.” My sincerest thanks to Eggland’s Best for their commitment of $50,000 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and for the opportunity to be involved in their effort.

Savory Sourdough Bread Pudding

Serves 10-12.

This is the perfect dish to serve at a brunch. And as my friends pointed out, it is an amazing comfort food. All you need is a fresh salad. You will also need a 13x9x2 inch baking dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 16-oz loaf of sourdough country-style bread
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 lb assorted fresh mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups finely sliced leeks
  • 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced celery
  • 1 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 6 oz smoked chicken and apple sausage, diced in 1/4 inch pieces
  • 3 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 8 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a baking dish and set aside.

Cut off the ends and the bottom crust of the loaf of sourdough and discard. Slice what is left of the loaf into 1-inch cubes and place in a large bowl. Toss with olive oil, thyme and minced garlic. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet covered with foil and bake in the oven for about 20 minutes, until the bread is golden brown. Place the bread cubes back into the bowl

Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Melt the butter in the pan, then add the mushrooms, leeks, celery and bell pepper. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Cook until the mushrooms and vegetables are wilted. Add the sausage. Continue to cook until the juices have evaporated. Add the sautéed vegetables to the bread, along with the parsley, and toss.

Whisk the heavy cream, eggs, salt and pepper together. Mix the egg custard mixture into the bread and combine. Pour into the buttered baking dish and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Bake the bread pudding uncovered for about 1 hour. The top should be golden brown. Let it stand 15 minutes prior to serving.

Recipe slightly adapted from Savory Bread Pudding with Mushrooms and Parmesan Cheese, Bon Appetit, November 2006, via Epicurious.

Comments

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  1. Allison C

    I like to purchase pink items that support breast cancer research and I always donate to friends that do walks and runs.

    Reply
  2. Liren

    I just want to say thank you to all of you for your touching comments. Writing this post was very poignant for me, and each one of you is a good reminder of why this world is a lovely place. Thank you!

    Reply
  3. skip to malou

    Thank you for sharing a special part of your life Liren. This post made me cry. It must have been difficult for you… but you have kept your mom alive by living the legacy she left behind… and now you are passing it to your daughter.
    I had a breast cancer scare years ago. I was terrified but it turned out to be benign. Every year I go for a mammogram and I tell my friends to do the same too.

    I hope you are having a wonderful week!
    Malou

    Reply
    • Liren

      Aw, hugs to you, Malou! I cried when I wrote it :) I am so relieved to hear your scare was a scare and nothing more. There is nothing more terrifying!!

      Reply
  4. Lea @ Healthy Coconut

    Thanks for sharing the story and memories of your mom. My mom is constantly battling her heart disease and your story reminds me to savor each day that we are given because you never know when our loved ones are taken from us.

    I read your blog and I met you at Foodbuzz last year…you are such a lovely and kind lady that I am sure your mom is very proud of you.

    I’ve participated in breast cancer awareness month by purchasing products in the market lately that are in special pink packages and products in which proceeds are being donated to the cause.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Thank you, Lea, for your lovely comment, that means so very much to me :) Enjoy each day with your mom! She is lucky to have a beautiful and sweet daughter in you!

      Reply
  5. spcookiequeen

    I’m so sorry Liren, I didn’t know you lost your mom that way. My best friend is battling it at the moment and I’ve been trying to help her, even if it’s only a little bit with food. I could only imagine how hard it was for you at such a young age. Will look for those eggs, I’ll make her this bread pudding, I’m sure it will put a smile on her face. You turned out beautiful, talented and strong, I’m sure your mom would be proud.
    Hugs,
    -Gina-

    Reply
    • Liren

      Aw, Gina, thank you! Your comment brought tears to my eyes. I hope you do try the bread pudding, I think you and your family will love it :) Hugs to you!

      Reply
  6. Ally

    At the beginning of each October, I send out a postcard to my a few close girlfriends reminding them that I love them to please remember to perform their self-breast exams. It might be a bit pushy, but after losing a friend to breast cancer a few years back, I’d rather be a bit pushy then lose another friend to something that could possibly have been prevented.

    Reply
  7. Betty Ann of AsianinAmericamag

    What a beautiful and inspiring story, Liren ! I got pretty emotional reading it. And your bread pudding recipe is so uplifting. I love baking this time of the year. Must try this one. Thanks for sharing all these with us! Hugs!

    Reply
    • Liren

      Thank you for the hugs, Betty Ann :) I know you would love my mom (and she you) if you had the chance to meet!

      Reply
  8. SharonF

    Have lost close family members with other types of cancer, so I make sure my mammograms are up to date, and I take my sister with me to have hers. She is a cancer servivor, so we certainly want to be on top of the breast cancer.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Cancer in all forms is absolutely terrifying, it is so true. So glad that your sister is a survivor and that you both go together for those mammograms!

      Reply
  9. Liz Barbo

    Your post brought tears to my eyes. You lived all our fears (those with loved ones with breast cancer). My mom was diagnosed in 1995 and again in 1997 (lymphoma that time) and I fear the day when she tells me it’s back. I’ve only done a few fundraisers (Golf for the Cure most recently), but I hope some day soon to be able to no longer have to worry about remission and know there is a cure. I know it won’t be in time for so many who have fought this horrible dis ease, but in time to spare millions more.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Oh Liz, I think about your mom every so often, each day that it stays away is a blessing. I do hope and pray that one day, we will no longer have to worry and that we can just enjoy our time with the ones we love!

      Reply
  10. Norma

    I lost a few friends to Cancer and my mom to Alzheimer’s. Memeories are what keeps us going strong. God bless you!

    Reply
    • Liren

      The memories are absolutely what keeps us strong, Norma. So true!

      Reply
  11. Baking Serendipity

    My mother in law beat breast cancer (but it was before my husband and I were even dating, so I wasn’t too involved in the happening of it all). Seems like we all know too many people touched by this. I love seeing good causes supported and your party sounds like a fun way to do so! The mother/daughter invites were perfect.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Too many people, indeed, are affected by this disease. I’m so happy to hear that your MIL is a survivor, what a blessing!

      Reply
  12. Carole R.

    As a two time breast cancer survivor I do anything I can to help other women. I will drive them to their mammograms or teke them to their chemo/radiation treatments.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Carole, you are the true hero, to battle and win, and to help other women going through this awful disease. Thank you :) I am in such awe of you!

      Reply
  13. Tracey@Tangled Noodle

    That you live such an inspired life is the best tribute to your mother. Thank you for sharing such personal memories and experiences with us. I love that you chose a recipe for your ‘brinner’ that left you more time to enjoy the company of the dear women in your and your daughter’s lives! 8-)

    Reply
    • Liren

      Tracey, it’s always an honor to share memories of my mom. Thank you so much for sharing my memories when you stop by!

      Reply
  14. Jean

    My exposure to breast cancer was, fortunately, only in the form of a scare two years ago but I still remember very well the fear–not only mine but that of my family’s on my behalf. Still, I can only imagine your experience with it. So happy that you have so many happy memories of your mom to hold close to your heart. Not just from this post but from others (and considering you a friend now as well), I can attest that she imparted a lot of her wonderful qualities in you. I’m sure your party was a beautiful tribute to this important cause.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Oh Jean, I did not realize that your scare was breast cancer – so frightening! For you and for all of us. Thank you so much for your sweet words, I’m so thankful for friends like you :)

      Reply
  15. Kathryn | Dramatic Pancake

    Liren, thank you so much for sharing your story and what a lovely dish to make for such a great cause. Beautiful. I don’t think I’ve actually ever had a savory bread pudding, but I am bookmarking this to make on my next lazy Sunday.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Kathryn, thank you! I do hope you have a lazy Sunday ahead – it is absolute comfort food :)

      Reply
  16. J @ ... semplicemente ... j

    It is just unbelievable how we ALL have been touched in one way or another by this devastating disease … my Mom has been living and fighting MSA – Multiple System Atrophy … another devastating disease … unfortunately no one really knows about my mom’s disease. You may read about it here:

    http://www.semplicementej.com/2011/10/msa-multiple-system-atrophy-please-read.html
    http://www.semplicementej.com/2011/10/world-awareness-day-for-msa.html
    http://www.semplicementej.com/2011/10/thank-you.html

    Yesterday I volunteered with my company at a rest stop at the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.

    My heart goes out to you on this October … your mom’s October … I know unfortunately all too well what it is to see your mom fight against a horrible disease.

    All my best to you … and yours …

    P.S. My bday is October 30 as well! Like your mom a strong Scorpio … :)

    Reply
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