I can’t remember the first time I had bread pudding. It’s one of those things that has so many varieties and changes with every occasion, location, and recipe developer. There seems to be no fixed recipe for bread pudding. I’ve experienced it as hard squares and soft pudding; sometimes it was warm with caramel; other times it was cool with raisins and rum sauce. I’ve had sweeter versions of it with chocolate syrup and more savory versions with cinnamon and nutmeg.
So when my mother-in-law requested bread pudding for dessert (I usually ask my parents-in-law if they have any cravings I can fulfill), I was initially at a loss of what version to prepare. Seeing that it is spring and all the delicious plump fruits and berries were in the markets, I decided to incorporate these fresh ingredients.
I chose to use brioche bread, but I know that it can be very difficult to find sometimes when you want to find it! If you need a substitute, using left-over stale white bread will suffice. Brioche is denser, and it soaks up the liquids nicely. I topped it off with some coarse sugar and made the dish not-too-sweet overall. It was the perfect ending to a fresh spring dinner with family!
2 cups milk or soy milk
2 cups coffee cream or Silk dairy free coffee creamer
8 egg yolks
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
200 g brioche bread slices, cut diagonally into triangles
1/4 cup dried currants
700 g strawberries, hulled and halved
1/8 cup coarse sugar
3 tbsp brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 400oF with a rack in the middle.
Place the milk and cream in a saucepan over medium heat and cook until just boiling. Remove from the heat and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and vanilla. Gradually whisk in the hot milk mixture just until combined.
Arranged the brioche slices in the base of a lightly greased baking dish about 8 cups capacity. The baking dish I used in the photo measures 6.5 x 10.5 inches.
Pour the custard over the brioche and top with the currants and strawberries.
Sprinkle with the sugars and bake for 20 – 25 minutes until golden.