THERE’S BREAD AND THEN THERE’S BREAD

When life gives you a free loaf of bread, it becomes your duty to do something outrageous with it. To that end, I bring you a most un-humble recipe for bread pudding.

bread pudding whiskey sauce

Our local grocery store had a buy one, get one free sale last week on French Bread. I use the name French Bread very loosely here because I would normally go to the boulangerie or bakery for a good loaf of bread to serve with dinner. I was rushed, trying to accomplish too much at once so I grabbed the bread from the store. It was as expected, not good quality and not tasty. The texture was like a sponge. The free bread sat on a shelf over the stove for two days. That’s when inspiration hit. It was a perfect foil for bread pudding.

Ingredients:

one loaf of day old French bread

3 eggs

4 cups whole milk

1 1/2 cups white sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar

2 Tbsp vanilla

1 cup raisins…here is where I diversified. We were out of raisins. I used a cup of dried fruit mix from Costco. Dried cherries, cranberries, pistachio’s, and almonds.

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and butter liberally a 9×13 baking dish.

Chop the bread into bite size pieces and place in large mixing bowl. Add milk and soak thoroughly. ┬áBeat eggs and sugar together in a separate bowl then add vanilla and spices. Fold bread mixture and egg/sugar mixture together then add the raisins …or dried fruit mixture. Pour into prepared baking dish and bake for 35-45 minutes. The top will spring back when touched and the sides will pull away from the pan.

It is the Outrageous Whiskey Sauce that makes this dish spectacular!

Whiskey Sauce

Ingredients:

1 stick unsalted butter

1 cup sugar

1 egg

1 cup whiskey…most recipes call for Boubon. We used Bulleit Rye because that is what we had in the liquor cabinet. I highly suggest that you try this.

In a sauce pan, melt butter over low heat adding the sugar and egg while whisking constantly until mixture thickens. Don’t walk away and don’t raise the temperature because the mixture will curdle. Whisk in the whiskey, tasting as you go. If you add the entire cup, the sauce will be very strong.

This bread pudding is perfect for a holiday dessert or an adult pot luck meal. If you are planning to serve this to children, I suggest you whip up a simple bowl of whipped cream as a topping instead of the whiskey sauce. Of course, there is nothing stopping you from gilding the lily and adding whipped cream on top of the whiskey sauce, or vanilla ice cream for that matter!

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