Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Perfect Winter Dessert: Bread Pudding!

I just pulled a batch of bread pudding out of the oven. It's one of my favorite "old fashioned" desserts--especially on another frigid day like today. My grandma used to serve up bread pudding when I was a child, and we always liked it. It's a simple dessert, yet nice enough to serve to company.

Oh, if only I could have guests over right now! That would be great! I really enjoy having friends over for dessert. But that’s not going to happen today—not with the roads iced-over like they are. Well, my husband and sons will enjoy the bread pudding. You might like to try it too.

Grandma’s Bread Pudding

7 cups bread cubes, toasted
6 T. butter, melted
4 large eggs, beaten

1 cup sugar
1 T. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
Optional: ½ cup raisins

In a 350 degree oven, toast bread crumbs on a cookie sheet for about 10 minutes (just until they are slightly crunchy). Remove bread crumbs from oven. Grease a 13 by 9 baking dish with butter. Put bread crumbs in dish, and drizzle with the melted butter. If desired, mix in raisins with the bread crumbs before drizzling with butter. In a mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Pour over bread crumbs in baking dish. Press mixture lightly with your hands or a wooden spoon. Bake in 350 degree oven for about an hour, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool slightly. Serve warm with caramel sauce, a fruit-flavored dessert sauce, or homemade rum sauce.

Melissa’s brand Raspberry Dessert Sauce is scrumptious on bread pudding. You can buy this sauce at specialty grocery stores, or online at They also make white chocolate, mango and kiwi lime dessert sauces and these are delicious too.

To make rum sauce, mix ½ cup (one stick) of butter and sugar in a small saucepan. Stir together until melted. Add 1 tsp. of vanilla. Stir in one egg, and cook about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add 1 tsp of rum extract or 1-3 T. of rum (to taste) and blend in. Serve on bread pudding.

The way I look at it, if the weather’s going to be cold and gloomy, you might as well make the most of it. What better way to do that than with a warm bowl of bread pudding, just out of the oven?!!

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