So at our house, we love a good bread and butter pudding. My mother steams it over the stove and it’s simple yet absolutely delicious. However, I tweaked the recipe a little and added a touch of holiday spirit to the original recipe.
A few tips to keep in mind: the longer you soak the bread, the better it tastes when done. Also, the richer the bread, the better the outcome. I baked my pudding this time, however, I added a water bath to the oven to ensure that the moisture was sealed in. You could use all cream if you are feeling indulgent or only milk if you want to reduce the calorie intake.
The addition of marzipan does add a great flavour, however, if you don’t have it, use ½ tsp almond extract and 4 tbsp almond meal. Dark fruit cake is another option that adds another layer of flavour, but it’s totally optional.
Note on the alcohol content: you could reduce it or you could use one specific flavour, but it’s essential to include alcohol since it’s a festive bread pudding. You do not taste the alcohol in it; you just taste the flavour. I’ve used a mixture of brandy, Cointreau, dark rum, Kahlúa and red wine.
Serves: 8 hungry people
- 20 pieces day-old brioche or croissants
- 2 cups mixed dried fruit soaked in alcohol
- ¼ cup cornflour
- ½ cup plain flour
- 4 eggs
- 3 tbsp vanilla extract
- 500mL milk
- 500mL cream
- 200g caster sugar
- 1 heap tbsp allspice
- 200g unsalted butter, softened
- 150g cashews, chopped
- 300mL alcohol of your choice
- 150g marzipan (optional)
- 50g dark fruit cake (optional)
• festive sprinkles
- In a large bowl, mix the cream, milk, vanilla, eggs, allspice, sugar, flour, cornflour, butter and a pinch of salt until well combined. Tear up the bread into pieces and add into the liquid mixture. Leave to soak for at least 30 min, preferably longer.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a Bundt cake tin with cooking oil.
- Once the bread has soaked in the liquid, add ½ the alcohol and cashews and stir. Transfer ½ the mixture into the tin and evenly layer the soaked fruit and dark fruit cake over the top. Cover with the remaining bread mixture and top with the marzipan and leftover fruit.
- Bake with a water bath under the tin in the oven for 35–40 min, or until cooked through. Once baked, remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 min.
- Pour over the remaining alcohol and leave to set overnight before slicing and eating.
- I like to garnish my bread pudding with Christmas tree and snowflake sprinkles. If you can’t get ahold of them, dust some icing sugar on top for a snowfall effect.