Nutwhats' Lisa Rast: Caramelpalooza Candymakers

From now through Caramelpalooza -- March 2 at Smeeks candy shop -- Chow Bella will introduce you to the 17 chefs participating in the third annual caramel tasting. Today, meet Lisa Rast of NutWhats.

For years, Lisa Rast has been mixing it up with cinnamon, walnuts, oats, almonds and a sweet glaze. Last October she made it official, naming her business NutWhats and taking her products to farmers markets around town. (We hear she's often at the Gilbert market, and you also order her products online.) One of her latest creations, "scribbles," includes combos of cherry and almond, cashew and coconut, andr even pecan and bacon - all drizzled with chocolate. She also makes straight-up salted caramels and we can't wait to see what she does with those for Caramelpalooza.

Q: Would you rather have a cabin in the woods or beach-front property?
A: Beach-front property since I love the ocean. It could even be just a shack by the ocean, I'm okay with that.

Q: What would you do with one million dollars?
A: I'd send the kids to a great college.

Q:What's your favorite tool in the kitchen?
A: Definitely a blender. You can make soup, smoothies, ice cream... it's so versatile.

Q: Would you rather see a DJ play or a live rock band?
A: A live rock band. We saw the Foo Fighters recently and it was the longest concert I've ever been to. He sang for like 3 hours straight.

Q: Do you go for comedy movies or serious dramas?
A: Me and my husband would want to see a comedy together. Our favorite is So I Married An Axe Murderer. You'd get a pretty good sense of our kind of humor by watching that movie.

The candy makers so far: Monica Castillo, Churn

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Shelby Moore