What wonderful way to use leftover bread! Goodness Knows we have plenty of good bread lying around quite often: perfect way to breathe new life into it, and elevate humble ingredients. We love this unpretentious and rustic little dessert.
It is perfectly adapted to gluten-free and a snap to prepare. Any soft-crust bread will do for bread pudding. The black-and-white alternating pattern is fun and takes only a few more minutes.
It is so delicious and so easy, you will find no end of desserts to use it with. Nice too know my caramel sauce is vegan, so you can use it at any meal! I always make sure I have some on hand, for all those times I dont want to fuss with dessert garnishes. A nice little drizzle will do the trick! And nothing beats the homemade version.
Soft Crust Bread
For bread pudding you want bread that has a soft crust, and a neutral flavor (no seeds no spices etc). Even so, if you let the bread cubes soak a little longer, even crusty bread will soften, so don’t write it off.
Bread Pudding Individual Servings
That will look very cute and very elegant. You’ll have a little more work layering, but at serving time you will be done: no slicing and no cutting!
It Freezes Well
Just be sure to wrap it air-tight, so the freezer odors do not get to it!
- 1-pound loaf soft crust bread, gluten-free OK, cut up in large chunks
- 4 eggs
- 4 cups milk or dairy-free milk, low-fat OK
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup rum or brandy
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ cup pure cocoa powder
- ¾ cup golden raisins
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
Combine the first set of ingredients by hand in a bowl, breaking up the bread with your hand as you go. Divide the mixture into two bowls. Add the cocoa in one bowl; add the raisins and orange zest in the second bowl. Combine each mixture thoroughly in their respective bowls.
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a 9-by- 13-inch baking pan. Layer the pan evenly with half the black (chocolate) mixture, top with half the white (raisin) mixture. Repeat with the remaining black mixture and the remaining white mixture, spreading gently and evenly so as not to disturb the bottom layers. (You might want to bake this pudding in muffin cups, for individual portions: Same instructions, shorter baking time. Start with 30 minutes).
Bake for about 1 hour, or a little longer, until the pudding looks nice and puffy and the center is barely firm. Serve warm or at room temperature, alone or with caramel sauce. Do you want to go all out? A scoop of coconut sorbet will go very well!