No shortage of Dutch treats
EDGERTON -- When Scott Landin quit his job of 12 years at Bayliner in Pipestone to start working at the Edgerton Bakery, he admits he wasn't much of a baker.
"When my youngest son was born, and my wife was away for the night, I decided to make chocolate chip cookies," he recalled. "They never turned out. When my wife looked at the recipe -- turns out I forgot the flour."
Now the owner of the small-town bakery, Landin has come a long way since his first baking attempt.
Landin said he first took the job at the bakery in order to spend more time with his kids. He was working a "split shift" at Bayliner and said that there were two weeks every month that he wouldn't see his children due to his work schedule.
"They'd get up for school after I left and would be in bed before I got home. I thought, life's too short," Landin said.
Landin got to know the owner of the bakery, Andy Brummel, while he volunteered on the Edgerton ambulance crew with Brummel.
Brummel started working at the Edgerton Bakery, owned by his father-in-law, in the late 1960s. In 1975, he took over the bakery with his wife, Judy.
Brummel managed the Edgerton bakery from 1975 to 1996, the Pipestone bakery from 1996 to 2008 and Fulda's bakery from 1986 to 1989. He retired in 2008.
"Andy mentioned the job to me, and then they put an ad in the paper saying they wanted someone to work at the bakery full-time, and I applied for it," Landin said, attributing his hiring to the relationship that was built on the ambulance crew.
Landin started working for Andy in 1995, and after two years, started managing the business while Andy managed the Pipestone bakery.
"Nov. 1, 1999, was the day I bought the bakery, and I've owned it ever since then. I guess it's going on 14 years now," Landin said.
As a boat builder, Landin didn't know much about running a bakery when he started, but Andy and Judy and other staff were more than willing to teach him what he needed to know.
"I got a lot of training, and they showed me the ropes quite a bit," he said.
Producing the standard bakery fare, from breads to rolls, Landin conceded the products of the Edgerton Bakery don't fit into current health trends.
"I enjoy making stuff for people, especially the good-tasting stuff," he said. "There isn't a dietician in the world that wants you to eat bread. And the fried rolls -- they are getting hammered even more. Dr. Oz is telling people to stay away from bread. It's like, 'You're hurting me man!"'
In spite of such health warnings, cream puffs remain the bakery's most popular item. The last week that Landin featured cream puffs, he said he made more than 1,300.
"I only do cream puffs every two months or so -- unless there is an order for 50 to 75, then I'm more than happy to do that," he said.
In the winter months, the Edgerton Bakery makes anise candy, a traditional Christmas hard candy known for its distinct flavor.
"We can't really make that in the summer, though. It would melt and just turn into one big block," Landin said.
The bakery is also known for the fried rolls that line the display case, and many families won't drive through Edgerton without stopping to pick up a dozen for the road.
"We try to do something different with our rolls sometimes. We'll do something exotic, and people will say 'That's pretty' and then buy a Bismarck anyway," Landin said with a laugh.
The eight-grain bread is another one of the bakery's popular items and a more healthy option.
"One thing I like to emphasize is that we make everything fresh," Landin said. I look at flyers for the big supermarkets, and everything they have is at least a day or two old. It's coming from somewhere where they baked it 12 hours ago, and then they have to ship it to the store."
The bakery, on the other hand, bakes all of its bread daily, without any preservatives. Leftover baked goods are placed on the day-old shelf at 5 p.m.
"One of our great selling points is how fresh everything is, though in the summer months that's a detriment because I don't put in any preservatives, and if you don't eat it in a couple days, it'll get bad on you," Landin said.
Today, the bakery has turned into a family business with two of Landin's sons, Kyle and Cody, working alongside him.
"I quite Bayliner to be with the kids more, and now I have both boys working here," he said.
Landin said he likes trying new things, and working with his sons has been a good way to bring in new ideas.
"My son, Kyle, started doing chocolate croissants, and now he has caramel-filled croissants, too," he said.
The Edgerton Bakery's newest venture will be a step away from its normal products.
After the loss of the Edgerton Pizza Ranch to fire, Landin said they have started making pizzas as a way to fill the need for a quick meal option in town.
"This is the first week we're advertising pizzas. My goal was to sell 12 in a week," Landin said.
He was surprised when he sold 12 by Monday.
"If it keeps going like that, we'll have to reset our goal," he said with a laugh.
Originally from Sherburn, Scott met his wife, an Edgerton native and a nurse at the Luverne Sanford Hospital, in 1983 when they both attended Minnesota West Community and Technical College.
Landin no longer volunteers on the ambulance crew and said, "My main hobby is coaching football now."
He has been an assistant coach for the Edgerton-Ellsworth football team for the past 12 years.
Over the years, Landin has made some mistakes, but he doesn't let them bother him too much.
"I can honestly tell you, I don't always do it perfectly, but my attitude is that I get to get up in the morning and do it all over again," he said.