Chocolate Bread Pudding

My mom shares this comfort food with a little life lesson…

chocolate bread puddingOur children never liked the traditional bread pudding with cinnamon and raisins. now in our “empty nest” season of life we have “up scaled” the recipe to include nuts, dried fruit, coconut, etc.  I can just hear their “ugh”!

When we first found this recipe for Chocolate Bread Pudding, my initial reaction was “ugh” — chocolate & bread do not go together!

But, then again, when have we not been able to eat something with chocolate in it?

So, being the adventurous one, Papa Jim made it, but just a half  recipe, in case we didn’t like it!

But that wasn’t a problem – it was delicious! It tastes like chocolate pudding with texture! It was wonderful plain, but ice cream dressed it up!

Life lesson: Don’t be afraid to try something new, especially if it contains chocolate!

Chocolate Bread Pudding
From Nana Shirley’s Kitchen

12 cups of ½ in. bread cubes
4 cups heavy cream (condensed milk works!)
2 cups milk
½ cup cocoa powder
1 Tablespoons instant coffee granules
1 cup sugar
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
10 egg yolks

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 300°. Toast bread on rimmed baking sheet, stirring occasionally, until golden and crisp, about 30 minutes. Transfer to large bowl.

Increase oven temperature to 325°.  Grease 13 x 9 inch baking pan.   Heat 1 ½ cups cream, milk, cocoa, coffee, and ½ cup sugar in saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until steaming and the sugar dissolves.  Pour warm cream mixture over toasted bread and let stand, tossing occasionally, until liquid has been absorbed, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring additional 1 cup cream to simmer in saucepan over medium-high heat. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate until smooth. Transfer 1 cup chocolate mixture to medium bowl and let cool 5 minutes. (Cover pan and reserve remaining chocolate mixture for serving.) Add egg yolks, remaining cream, and remaining sugar to bowl with chocolate mixture and whisk to combine.

Transfer soaked bread mixture to prepared pan and pour chocolate custard mixture over bread. Bake until pudding is just set and surface is slightly crisp, about 45 minutes. Let cool 30 minutes.

Warm reserved chocolate mixture over low heat, then pour over bread pudding.   Serve. (Leftover bread pudding should be refrigerated or frozen; reheat individual portions in microwave.)

Make ahead: In step 4, once soaked bread mixture has been transferred to prepared pan, the pan can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated overnight. When ready to bake, remove plastic and proceed with recipe as directed, increasing baking time to 55 minutes. Let reserved chocolate serving sauce cool, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Heat sauce in microwave when needed.

Option: You can half the recipe and bake in an 8 X 8 inch pan.

Until next time,
Nana Shirley

Ahh, more wise words from Mom, who is one of the most adventurous women I know!

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