There’s nothing stale about this Bourbon Bread Pudding
In the case of bread pudding, frugality was the mother of invention. Food historians point to cooks looking for ways to use leftover bread instead of letting it go to waste.
This iconic dessert is a New Orleans staple and a fine way to finish off quality bread before it gets stale. The alcohol is traditional but can be left out if you prefer.
New Orleans Bourbon Bread Pudding with a Hard Sauce
1 pound loaf of crusty bread (baguette, pain rustique or similar bread)
1 cup raisins
3 cups cream
1 cup milk
11⁄2 cups light brown sugar
8 egg yolks
3⁄4 cup bourbon (split into 1⁄2 cup and 1⁄4 cup)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon nutmeg
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat oven to 450 F.
Tear bread into 1-inch pieces, place on a sheet pan and toast in oven for 12 minutes or until lightly browned.
Simmer raisins in 1⁄2 cup bourbon for 5 minutes
Whisk together in a large bowl, cream, milk, brown sugar, yolks, 1⁄4 cup bourbon, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
Drain off bourbon from raisins and add to custard.
Add bread and let soak for 1⁄2 hour, press bread down into custard occasionally.
Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish and split raisins into 2 even batches.
Add half raisins to custard and pour into dish, sprinkle the rest of the raisins on top.
Cover and bake for 45 minutes at 300 F.
Meanwhile, prepare the streusel by cutting chilled butter into 1⁄4-inch cubes, adding sugar and cinnamon and mash together with a fork.
Uncover pudding, sprinkle the top with streusel, replace in oven covered for 20 to 25 minutes.
Place under broiler for 2 minutes to brown if desired.
Serve warm or room temperature, it can be refrigerated for later serving.
Phil’s Hard Sauce
1⁄2 stick butter
1⁄2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons whipping cream
2 tablespoons bourbon
Pinch of salt
Heat ingredients in saucepan over medium heat, whisking frequently.
Phil Newton is a Galveston baker/cook. He’s the owner/operator of Stiglich Corner with partner Cindy Roberts.