This year, our Valentine’s Day was all about indulgence. And WHAT is more indulgent than bread pudding?
I’ll answer that. Nothing. It is my husband’s favorite dessert. I make it in about a million different flavor combinations and we love them all.
I’ve made bread pudding for this blog before, but one thing I’ve really begun to enjoy is re-shooting recipes I’ve blogged about in the past.
I blogged about my bread pudding back in 2011 (you can see that original post here.) And as hard as I tried to make that dish look appetizing at 9 pm under the fluorescent lighting of my kitchen, it was a lost cause. Surprised? If you know anything about photography (which I didn’t) then you are not surprised at all.
But it has been great fun to practice and expand my skills over time! I’m still an amateur and these newer photos still have some flaws which of course I won’t be pointing out. But I think we can all appreciate that the pudding looks somewhat edible and isn’t neon yellow.
I’ve had a lot of people tell they that they aren’t bread pudding fans… but incidentally, a lot of the people who’ve told me that later reveal that they haven’t tried it. Admittedly, the name doesn’t scream “sophistication.” And at first glance, you might assume the texture would be unpleasant. But you would be wrong! Bread pudding is a silky, rich, magical thing! It’s basically a larger, fancier version of French Toast. So how could that be bad?
And you can’t beat a dessert that uses up old stale bread that would otherwise be thrown away.
This one is White Chocolate & Raspberry, which is Chris’s and my particular favorite. Hope I’ve convinced you to at least give it a try! Maybe for Valentine’s Day???
P.S. This recipe can be adapted in a million ways. Here’s a blueberry white chocolate version that is delicious as well! Also, sometimes we like to eat our bread pudding with a drizzle of pure maple syrup, and other times I whip up a batch of this sinful Espresso Butter Glaze. (To DIE for.)
I am including the Espresso Butter Glaze recipe below in case you’d like to try that. I highly recommend it!
White Chocolate Raspberry Bread Pudding
4 Cups cubed stale bread (sourdough and french are my favorite!)
2 Cups heavy cream or half & half
1/2 Cup sugar + 3 T. brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1 Cup white chocolate chips, divided (And although I pride myself on not being a food snob… I must say that Ghirardelli brand really are better in this recipe! Really!)
1 small container of fresh raspberries (or one Cup frozen, thawed & drained.)
1 packet of Sugar In The Raw (aka: sanding sugar), for dusting
2 Tbs. melted butter
Maple Syrup, optional
Butter an 8×8 in. baking dish. Set aside.
Place the cubed bread in a single layer on a cookie sheet and dry out in a 350 oven for about 6 minutes. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all ingredients except the white chocolate, raspberries, raw sugar, butter, & maple syrup.
In a small, microwave-safe bowl, melt 3/4 C. of the white chocolate chips in the microwave. (Important Note: Heat the chocolate in increments of 25 seconds, stirring in between, to prevent burning. Chocolate will likely be fully melted by your third stir.)
Take 1/2 cup of the egg mixture and quickly whisk it into the melted chocolate to help temper the eggs and prevent scrambling. Then add the white chocolate to the large bowl of the egg/cream mixture. Whisk to combine.
Add in the bread cubes and gently stir to coat. Allow bread cubes to soak in the custard for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375.
Gently fold the raspberries and the remaining 1/4 C. of white chocolate chips into the bread pudding mixture. Pour into buttered baking dish. Pour melted butter evenly over the top, then sprinkle with the packet of raw sugar.
Bake at 375 for about 40-45 minutes. Pudding will not be completely set but should not be soupy. If the top starts becoming too brown, cover with foil and return to the oven to finish baking.
Serve plain or drizzled with maple syrup!
Espresso Butter Glaze
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1 shot brewed espresso (or 1 Tbsp instant espresso, dissolved in 1 Tbsp. hot water)
2 C. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 C. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
Whisk all ingredients together until smooth, and drizzle over warm bread pudding for a delicious added depth and sweetness.