Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Toast Pudding

Sean often begs for toast and butter.  And begs.  And begs.  It would be lovely if I could give this to him for every meal, but alas I cannot.

When I first looked at the bread pudding recipe in Meta Given's "The Modern Family Cookbook" (1958 edition), it was an attempt to find breakfast alternatives that would thrill Sean's little mouth.  Meta's recipe was more of a "bread and butter" pudding, and called for buttered toast.  Perfect!  Of course, I morphed her recipe quite a bit... but I still owe Meta thanks for the inspiration!

Sean watched me baking in the kitchen, and named it "toast pudding."  He was extra proud seeing me use the Oatmeal Bread he helped Mummy to bake.  This is my recipe, inspired by an idea out of Meta Given's cookbook.  (I wish they'd re-publish her works!).

 Toast Pudding
from Jenai May's kitchen

Toast and lightly butter both sides of          thick slices of bread (I dare you to use whole grain bread... it's delicious!).  I cut these slices close to an inch thick. It's great if you can cut your own, or perhaps double up two thin slices.  Take it easy on the butter, because it's really only there for flavour.  Not that it isn't delicious with more butter...

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a 7x11 baking pan (I think an 8x8 would work fine as well), break up and evenly distribute three of the bread slices into hearty chunks.  Sprinkle 1/2 cup of raisins (I placed these on top the first time, and burnt a few... as you can see in the photo).  Then break up the remaining three slices of bread.

In a medium mixing bowl (or 4 cup liquid measuring cup), combine well:
3 cups of warm milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 Tablespoons honey (or 1/3 cup of brown or white sugar)
5 beaten eggs
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Pour the liquid mixture over the toast, whilst pressing down any bits of bread that might dare poke up and stay dry. I also like to sprinkle a little more nutmeg and cinnamon over the top. Bake for about 35 to 40 minutes (don't bother with baking this in a pan of hot water, as this recipe doesn't need it), or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool and then either serve this warm or refrigerate and serve cold.

This recipe is fairly flexible.  You can decrease the eggs to about 3... and I've used as many as 6 or 7 (yes, it gets a bit "eggy" when I use that many).  Make it sweeter if you like, or saltier.  Try using cardamom, ginger, or other spices.  Perhaps you enjoy using agave nectar?  Go ahead!  Play with it.  :)


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