Thursday, October 13, 2011

S'mores Croissant Bread Pudding

When I heard we were serving a version of this at work for Sunday brunch, I started to sweat a little. For someone who doesn't like bread pudding, even I thought this sounded amazing. So I was not looking forward to Sunday when I had a feeling we'd be faced with a hungry crowd of guests and no more s'mores bread pudding to serve them. Thankfully, that wasn't the case and I came away with another great idea for Break Fast for Yom Kippur.

This was definitely the show stopper on our buffet. The marshmallows sort of melt leaving their great sugary flavor behind, but adding just that slight chew that comes from an ooey gooey marshmallow. But what really makes this bread pudding so great (and something I actually like) is the croissants. They add a buttery richness and decadence to the pudding that is seriously magical. Plus, the texture is so different than your typical bread pudding. No soggy bread here!

Bread pudding is very versatile. It's great to serve to a group, and can be served as dessert after dinner or as the main course at a special brunch. There are endless flavor and add-in combinations so you're sure to find something that everyone will like. Even if they think they don't like bread pudding.

S'mores Croissant Bread Pudding
Yield: 10-12 servings

4 eggs
12 egg yolks
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
5 cups half-and-half
2 tsp vanilla extract
10 croissants, stale or toasted
2 cups chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the whole eggs, egg yolks, and sugar. Add the half-and-half and vanilla. Set the custard mixture aside.
2. Cut the croissants into about 8 pieces each and put into a large bowl. Pour the custard over the croissants and add the marshmallows and chocolate chips, mixing so everything is well combined. Allow to soak for at least four hours or overnight.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large casserole dish or 9x13'' baking dish. Pour the croissant mixture into the baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour or until the pudding puffs up and the custard is set. Remove from the oven and cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Recipe Notes
  • Watch the bread pudding toward the end of the cooking process. If the top or edges start to get too brown before the custard is set, cover with foil and continue to cook.
  • You can use the custard recipe as a base and sub in different garnishes: 1 cup raisins or dried fruit, toasted nuts, fresh berries, etc.
  • For chocolate bread pudding, add a few tablespoons of cocoa powder to the custard. Other additions: nutella, peanut butter, butterscotch chips and caramel sauce, cinnamon and apples. The options are endless!
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten


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