Child, it’s good Chocolate bread pudding
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If bread pudding is mostly bread, it makes sense that the better your bread, the better the pudding. I usually make my bread pudding with challah, as Luther liked it best. For this book, I decided to mix things up a bit. This recipe uses raisin and cinnamon bread for that touch of spice that I love. The big secret, as with any bread pudding, is to use stale bread; otherwise, it will disintegrate in the custard.
1 liter half and half
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
8 large eggs
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
A 1 pound sliced raisin and cinnamon bun, stale or baked, cut into 1 inch pieces (see Patti’s Pointers)
Softened butter, for the dish
Confectionery sugar, for serving
Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, for serving
1. Heat half and half and granulated sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring often to dissolve the sugar, until simmering. Remove from fire. Add 1 cup of the chocolate chips and let stand until the chips soften, about 3 minutes. Whisk well to melt the chocolate.
2. Beat eggs and vanilla well in a very large bowl. Gradually fold in the hot chocolate mixture. Add bread pieces and let stand, stirring occasionally, until bread has absorbed some of the chocolate mixture, 15 to 20 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 ° F. Butter a 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish.
4. Distribute the bread mixture evenly in the prepared dish. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cups of chocolate chips on top. Place the dish in a larger dish. Pour hot tap water into the larger pot up to about 1/2 inch from the sides of the dish. Place in the oven and bake until the pudding is evenly puffed, about 40 minutes.
5. Remove the dish from the pan and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Sift the icing sugar over it. Serve in bowls, topped with whipped cream.
Patti’s pointers: For best results, bread should be firm and dry. If you have soft bread, you have several options. The day before baking, place the fresh slices on a large baking sheet (they can overlap) and let them rest, uncovered, at room temperature, turning the slices occasionally, for at least one night or up to 1 day. Or bake the slices, spread out on two large baking sheets, in a preheated 350 ° F oven until the bread is dry but not toasted, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting the bread.
Extract from LaBelle Desserts by Patti LaBelle. Copyright © 2017 by Pattonium Inc. Reprinted with permission from Grand Central Life & Style. All rights reserved.