Nothing smells better at Christmas time than Bread Pudding baking in the oven. Add to that a deliciously warm sauce served over the bread pudding and you have a dessert that any Southerner would proudly serve.
2 c. whole milk (or 2 c. half & half)
¼ c. butter
2 tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2/3 c. brown sugar (light or dark, depending on taste preference)
3 c. bread, torn into small pieces (French bread works best)
½ c. raisins and/or ½ c. chopped pecans (optional)
In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, heat milk or half and half just until film forms over top. Combine butter and milk, stirring until butter is melted. Cool to lukewarm.
Combine sugar, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer at medium speed for 1 minute. Slowly add milk mixture.
Place bread in a lightly buttered 1 ½ qt. casserole. Sprinkle with raisins and/or nuts if desired. Pour batter on top of bread.
Bake at 350° for 45-50 minutes or until set. Serve warm.
If you make the sauce to put on top of your bread pudding, adjust the sugar in the bread pudding recipe, change it to 1/3 c. sugar (the sauce has the other 1/3 c. in it.)
Bread Pudding Sauce
1 c. whole milk
2 Tbsp. butter
1/3 c. granulated white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp. flour
dash of salt
Mix everything together and bring to a boil for 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly. Set aside for 5 minutes, and then pour on warm bread pudding.
Peanut Butter Bread Pudding
This delicious bread pudding is wonderful with chocolate sauce, or add about ½ c. of mini chocolate chips to the mixture just before baking.
6 oz. torn French or Italian bread, about 4-5 c.
¾ c. creamy peanut butter
4 c. 2% milk, divided
2/3 c. brown sugar
1/3 c. granulated sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
4 large eggs
½ c. mini chocolate chips, optional
Butter an 11x7-inch baking dish. Heat oven to 350°. Put torn bread into a medium bowl. Beat 3 c. of milk with the 4 eggs and vanilla; pour over the bread, stirring to blend.
In a saucepan, combine peanut butter, the remaining 1 c. milk and sugars. Heat the mixture over medium heat until peanut butter is melted and mixture is smooth. Blend the peanut butter mixture into the bread mixture. Add mini chocolate chips, if desired.
Pour into the prepared baking dish; bake for 45-55 minutes, or until set. Serve with a chocolate sauce or syrup.
New Orleans Bread Pudding with Rum Sauce
1 loaf French bread, torn into chunks
1 qt. milk
2 c. sugar
2 Tbsp. vanilla
1 c. peeled apples, diced
½ c. raisins
3 Tbsp. butter, melted
Soak bread in milk for about 30 minutes. Mix sugar, vanilla, eggs and apples. Combine with bread chunks. Spread melted butter on bottom of 13x9x2-inch pan. Add bread mixture. Bake at 350° about 30-35 minutes, until bubbly and hot.
½ c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Rum to taste, about 3 Tbsp.
Cream butter and sugar. Add vanilla. Slowly stir in 1 egg, and then add the rum. Heat and stir over low heat about 5 minutes. Serve warm over individual pudding servings.
Yield: 8-10 servings
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