Monday, 2 September 2013

#04 - Queen of Bread Pudding - Apricot Flavour


Whenever I have expired bread and I do not want to waste it, bread pudding will be the first thing that comes into my mind. My first attempt at bread pudding was many years back and the most interesting thing was that I managed to "bake" the bread pudding without an oven! It was merely using a small oven toaster. Surprisingly, the results was good! Sweet and milky! Till now, my hubby still often remind me about it.

Attempt 2 was couple of months back when I first started on this baking/ cooking craze of mine. I would not say that the attempt was a failure, but I could definitely sense that hubby was not impressed with the bread pudding them. According to him, my first try at most recipes always seemed to turn out to be better. Don't know whether I should be happy about it. I guess, not. 

Today, I decided that I must do something to reclaim my reputation with regards to bread pudding! Haha. Furthermore, I have some leftover bread on the counter-top which we have to finished before we go for our trip tomorrow. Hence, I decided to give bread pudding another shot! This time round, I am making Queen of Bread Pudding! 

Queen of bread pudding is a warm custard dessert, topped with fruity jam and a meringue. This is slightly more complicated as compared to the usual bread pudding as it involved 3 tier. For my version, I decided to use apricot jam which has a slight acidic taste to it (not just pure sweetness) which I felt would go very well with the lemon zest in the custard. If you are someone who likes custard, jam and meringue, this is the recipe you have got to try! 

I love how the sweetness of the apricot jam blends in with the light and chewy meringue. At the same time, not forgetting how soft and slightly acidic the custard is. In my opinion, the 3 layers blend really well with one another. Yum yum! 


Serves 6 to 8

Apricot Jam                   : 1/2 cup
Butter                             : 60 g
Eggs                               : 4 (separated)  
Lemon Zest                    : 1 lemon
Milk                               : 3 cups
Sugar                              : 4 tbs
Vanilla extract                : 1 tsp
White bread                   : 6 slices (crusts removed, cut into small pieces of 2 cm by 2cm)

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degree Celsius. Butter a 10" pie plate and set aside.

2. Warm the milk using a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add in the butter.

3. Once the mixture of milk and butter starts to simmer, check that the butter is completed melted. When  this is done, remove the saucepan from the heat and add in the bread, lemon zest, 2 tbs of sugar and vanilla extract. Stir the mixture until dissolved. Allow the mixture to stand for 20 minutes, so that the breadcrumbs absorb the liquid. 

4. After 20 minutes, beat the mixture well with a whisk until the mixture is smooth. 

5. Whisk the egg yolk in a separate bowl. Slowly add the egg yolks to the mixture and whisk well. The combined mixture will form the custard of the pudding.

6. Pour the custard mixture into the 10" pie plate and allow it to bake for 25 minutes until the custard has set. Once the custard has set, remove from oven and set aside to cool. 

7. While waiting for the custard to cool, prepare the meringue. Whisk the egg whites using an electric mixer (full speed) until stiff peaks are formed. When whisking, add in the remaining 2 tbs of sugar slowly. 

8. When the custard is cool, spread the apricot jam carefully over the top of the custard. On top of the jam, place the meringue and spread it such that it covers the top of the pudding.

9. Lower the temperature of the oven to 150 degree Celsius and return the bread pudding into the oven to bake for another 10 minutes, until the meringue appears golden brown.

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