This bread pudding is so fantastic that I’ve decided to serve it at next month’s Thanksgiving Feast instead of pumpkin pie. It is such an easy and quick dish to make, yet so satisfying. The rich, warm custard has just the right amount of spices and pumpkin flavor. Garnished with a dollop of whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce, this is the perfect fall treat!
Pumpkin Bread Pudding
Yields 6 servings
5 cups cubed (1-inch) day-old baguette or crusty bread*
3/4 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 cup whole milk
1 1/2 cups canned solid-pack pumpkin
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs plus 1 yolk
3 tablespoons Grand Marnier (optional)
1/2 cup pecan, chopped (optional)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoons ground allspice
2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cloves
Whipped cream, caramel sauce, and more chopped pecans, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Toss bread cubes with butter in a bowl and set aside.
Whisk together the rest of the ingredients in another bowl, then pour pumpkin/cream mixture over the bread. Toss to coat the bread well. Let it sit, covered, for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator to let the custard absorb into the bread.
Transfer to an ungreased 8-inch square baking dish and bake until custard is set, 25 to 30 minutes. Alternatively, for individual servings, divide and transfer to 6 ramekins.
Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream, a drizzle of caramel sauce, and a sprinkling of chopped pecans.
*Note: Since day-old bread is preferable in this dessert, I went to the “sale” section of my local Ralphs grocery store where damaged or almost expired products are discounted. I found a package of 2 small baguettes from La Brea Bakery that were a day old for .79 cents.
Adapted from Gourmet magazine, October 2007
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