When I found myself with an excess of pumpkin bread, I did what most everyone else does with stale bread -- I made bread pudding! Wow! What a revelation this turned out to be. From now on, I'm going to double my bread recipe just so I will have leftovers for this delicious dessert. Stale Italian or French bread or brioche will work, but the flavor will not be the same.
Bread pudding is a simple baked dessert made with cubes of bread saturated in a custard mixture of milk or cream, eggs, sugar, vanilla and spices. When the bread slices are buttered and left whole, the dessert is known as bread-and-butter pudding. When the dish is made with dried fruit and bread, cake or ladyfingers soaked in liqueur, it's known as cabinet pudding and is a classic British dessert.
This dessert really needs no embellishment but if you want to pull out all the stops, serve it with Easy Vanilla Custard Sauce or Easy Caramel Sauce, a dollop of lightly or unsweetened whipped cream or scoop of vanilla or cinnamon ice cream. It doesn't get any better than this.
- For the Custard:
- 2 cups sugar
- 5 large beaten eggs
- 2 cups milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice mix
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger
- 3 cups 1/2-inch cubed stale savory pumpkin bread or Italian or French bread or brioche
- For the Streusel Topping:
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 ounces softened butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
- For the Easy Caramel Sauce:
- 4 ounces butter
- 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 3/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1 (14-ounce) can
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch salt
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 13x9-inch pan with cooking spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice mix, and ginger until well incorporated. Stir in cubed pumpkin bread, making sure all pieces are saturated, and let sit for 10 minutes.
To make the streusel, in a small bowl, crumble together the brown sugar, butter, flour and pumpkin seeds.
Pour bread pudding mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle streusel evenly over the top and bake for 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean or with just a little liquid attached. Remove from oven. Serve warm or cold with desired sauce or on its own.
To make the caramel sauce: Place butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and condensed milk in a medium saucepan and heat over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar, about 5 minutes. Stir in vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Use immediately or pour into a heatproof bowl. Store in the refrigerator. Microwave when ready to use.