Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Chocolate candy bread pudding celebrates chocolate day

Okay, so we’re a couple of days late. National Milk Chocolate Day was actually on July 28. But after spending a week cruising the Atlantic ocean and gazing at the lovely blue waters of Bermuda, we have to be forgiven for being somewhat distracted.

Now back to bread pudding. And what a delicious reality it is. In honor of this celebration of our favorite sweet and ingredient, we’ve created a bread pudding using chocolate almond bars. And because red fruits seem to go so well with chocolate, we decided to top our pudding with a raspberry sauce. We took a short cut making this delightful sauce – we melted some raspberry preserves, seeds and all, in a saucepan, and thinned it out with a few drops of Amaretto – for a wonderful and easy accent.

We found biting down on the occasional almond to be a delightful surprise, but if you don’t care for nuts, you can use plain chocolate. I tend to favor dark chocolate – the higher the number, the better, but the milk chocolate was actually very pleasant in this dish. And yes, we did enjoy it with our breakfast coffee – so what else is new?


2-1/2 cups bread cubes
1/2 cup (heaping) chopped milk chocolate (two 1.45-ounce bars), with or without almonds
2 large eggs
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1-1/2 to 1-3/4 cups milk, heated to scalding

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine bread cubes and chocolate pieces in greased 1-1/2-quart baking dish. In large bowl, combine eggs, sugar, salt, vanilla, and cinnamon. Add hot milk slowly, stirring. Pour over bread mixture. Push bread down into liquid. Bake for 45-60 minutes or until puffy and firm and browned on top. Serve topped with raspberry sauce (below), whipped topping and fresh fruit. Serves 4-6.
Raspberry Sauce: In saucepan, heat 1/2 cup (or amount of your choice) raspberry preserves on low heat until melted, stirring in a few spoonfuls of Amaretto or raspberry liqueur to thin out mixture.
© 2008 recipes by Portia Little, adapted from a recipe in Finger Lakes Food, Fact & Fancy cookbook by the same author.

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