This was so much better than I had anticipated! Bread pudding is a bit underrated I think because it is so easy to make and people may assume that it has a low potential for being something wonderful. Granted, this would be much better to enjoy on a late Autumn day or during a blustery Winter night when you can sit next to a fire with a good book and a huge mug of cocoa. Mid-Summer took away from some of it's cozy ambiance. The bees seemed to be more than happy to swarm around it as we tried to eat on the patio. Any passing cars must have thought we were having spasms or that we were just plain nuts ( could be true ). Since I was little, Bees, wasps, anything annoying and capable of inducing pain has had a love affair with me. I swear it is the same deer fly every year that does circles around my head until I run like a maniac into my car. It just waits for me all winter or else passes on the knowledge of my existence to it's spawn. The theme from Jaws floats through my head when I have to make the walk down my long driveway to get the mail. The bread pudding was worth the possible 'crazy' rumors, But we moved indoors eventually.
The taste was what I think a bread pudding should be. The bread had a lovely soft, and spongy texture from the eggs and cream. I added some Kahlúa and this offered a nice little warmth to the back of your throat. The pudding gently oozed out as the pudding was sliced and you could just spoon it up and drizzle it over each piece. I also added some bittersweet chocolate chips. Not too much. I didn't want the pudding to be a chocolate dessert. Just enough to make it richer and take some of the edge off the sweetness. It came together beautifully with the touch of cinnamon and nutmeg. This may not have been one of the prettiest desserts to look at but the taste was exquisite! I will definitely make this again when the weather turns cold.
Kahlúa Bread Pudding
( recipe adapted from Joy of Baking )
* printer friendly Recipe *
- 9-10 cups of bread cubes cut into bite sizes pieces. (I used some old challah bread and cut off the crusts)
- 4 Tbsp. of butter. Melted and cooled
- 4 cups of cream or whole milk (reduce down to 3 3/4 cups if you are using Kahlúa or rum)
- 1/4 cup of Kahlúa or rum
- 1 cup of granulated sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp. of vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp. of ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. of nutmeg
- 2oz of Dark chocolate ( chips or chopped from a block )
Preheat the oven to 300F. Lightly butter or spray a 9x13x2 inch baking pan. Place the pan into a larger roasting pan and be sure there is enough room to fill with water.
Make the custard:Beat the eggs and sugar on high speed until thick ( about 5 minutes ) the mixture should be a lemon colour and when you raise the beater there should be a nice 'ribbon' that flows down slowly. Beat in the vanilla, nutmeg and cinnamon. Then beat in the melted and cooled butter, the cream, and the Kahlúa if using.
Place the cubed bread into the baking pan and try to make a nice, even layer. Pour the custard over the bread and make sure everything is covered completely. Gently push down on any cubes that are sticking out.
To prepare the water bath, Carefully pour in enough hot water into the roasting pan to come half-way up the sides of the 9x13 baking pan. You do this so the eggs will not cook too much and ruin the consistency of the custard. Bake for about 1 hour or until no custard comes to the surface when the middle is pressed down. You can also test the middle with a toothpick. Remove the pan from the water bath and allow to cool for about 20 minutes before serving. This is best enjoyed on the day it is made.