Old Bread and Memories of a Gluton

The French have their pain perdu, those folks in the states their french toast, in fact you would would probably be hard pressed to find a country that lacked a tasty way of using up the left over odds and ends of bread.

Come on, you know you have some, those last stale pieces lurking in the back of the bread drawer? It seems the better, the fresher, the more home-style delicious the loaf, the faster it seems to go rock-solid, and all the more reason to find your favorite way to re-incarnate it into something you can cherish.

Unlike most card carrying Brits I had never tried a proper bread and butter pudding until I was in my teens. On holiday with my Grans in wales, we stopped off at a little pub, and after a side-splittingly delicious meal I was faced with the most heavenly mound of bread pudding ever seen on earth, thick, golden buttery and delicious. I made myself truly ill gorging down the desert while my poor grans watched on absolutely horrified.

The Good Housekeeping Cookery Book, a present from my godmother Judy a few years back, has a fairly decent rendition of this recipe, and if you are looking for something as overwhelmingly delicious as I savored at the inn, you will have to replace the milk with the thickest cream you can lay your hands on.

Bread and Butter Pudding with Custard and Sultanas

2 oz butter, softened
6 slices white bread
1 oz currants
1 oz sultanas
3 medium eggs
1 pint of milk
2 oz light brown sugar
pinch of spice mix

Now, I suppose I should warn you I am a recipe rebel. You cant get currants in Corrientes, a miserable but unfortunately true fact of this town, so I went for a sultana/raisin mix, I never measure these things I just throw them in by the handful. According to the way this ought to be made you should butter each piece of bread, you can do this, or like me, melt the butter and mix it in with the rest of the ingredients.

Grease a dish with a little butter and lay down the bread in a layer, covered by a sprinkling or raisins, followed my another layer of bread. I use french bread, but you can use what you have on hand. Beat the eggs, milk sugar and spices (I use cinnamon, a hint of ginger, and a lot of nutmeg) and pour over the bread. Let this sit at least 30 minutes in the fridge, longer if you have got the time.

Preheat the oven to about 350 degrees and bake for 45ish minutes until the top is golden brown and still moist in the middle.

You can drizzle a little cream over the top, but I was feeling in the mood for more cooking, and I thought a niced custard would be nice. I had never made a custard before but it was very straight forward and actually rather fun to make.

French Vanilla Custard, also from The Good Housekeeping Cookery Book

1 pint milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 large eggs
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp cornflour
1) Pour the milk into a pan. Add the vanilla extract. Slowly bring to the boil. Turn off the heat immediately and set aside for 5 minutes.

2) Put the egg yolks, sugar and cornflour into a bowl and whisk together. Gradually whisk in the warm milk.

3) Rinse the pan and pour the mixture back in. Heat gently, whisking or stirring constantly for 2-3 minutes or until the custard thickens. Serve immediately or cover the surface closely with a round of wet greaseproof paper, then cover with clingfilm and chill until needed.


Rodo Girando x Saavedra said...

Tiene una pinta barbara...ahora, debe ser una bomba...te felicito por el blog and keep up with the posts!
Saludos desde Baires!

Pamela said...

What a lovely recipe Katy. I would really like to try that.

At the age of 30 I have yet to try bread and butter pudding or spotted dick (it's a pudding not a medical condition, hehe). You don't tend to get these types of desserts in Scotland.

rowena said...

Today it is chilly and cloudy...looking at this simple dessert (especially with french vanilla custard, yum!) is making me wish I hadn't thrown the stale bread to the birds (they never eat it anyway, probably prefering insects instead).

Thanks for stopping by, always great to be introduced to fellow foodies. Argentina sounds fantastic!

darlamay said...

OH my goodness that looks ooey gooey fantastic!

Jasmine said...

Hi Katy

Thanks for visiting me :)

I adore bread pudding--it's a simple, but wonderful pleasure of life :)]

Yours looks great!


Nerissa said...

oooh! You have my attention. I never had this kind of pudding but I just know I'd love it :D

jenjen said...

beautiful! I have just discovered how good bread and butter pudding can be, as well. Well I guess it's, better late then never : )