November 14, 2016

drunken raisin bread pudding with whiskey cream sauce

There is a reason that they sing about figgy pudding in Christmas carols. Because it's amazing and rich and perfect for every holiday reason in the world!

Dinner party? Check.
Taking dessert to a gathering? Check.
Curling up and watching a movie by the fire? Check.
Breakfast? Check.
Blustery night? Check.
Itching for something shamefully good? Check.

See? So many reasons to love this Drunken Raisin Bread Pudding with Whiskey Cream Sauce. (Yes, whiskey. Run the liquor store on Wednesday nights when your Baptist friends are at choir practice. HA!) (I have Baptist in my genes, so I can rightfully poke fun.)

Back to this comfort dish! Rich and creamy. Warm and cinnamony. Sweet and boubon-y. Toasty and mushy. 

And the sauce. No more words needed, y'all. And I meant that. 

Here's the recipe. 
Oh, and click HERE to watch me make this on my cooking show with additional tips and instructions! 

Makes one 9x13 pan

1 loaf of french or Italian bread, torn (about 6 cups of bread)
⅔ cup golden raisins
2-3 Tbs bourbon
1 Tbs unsalted butter
2 cups heavy cream
4 cups whole milk
6 large eggs
1 ¾ cups brown sugar
4-5 teaspoons good vanilla
1 ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg or freshly grated which I love
¼ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 250F Place torn bread on a baking sheet in the oven for about 15 minutes to dry so the bread won’t become soggy when it soaks. While the bread bakes, heat the raisins and 3 Tbs bourbon in the microwave for about 30 seconds; remove and allow raisins to soak. Remove the bread from the oven, and turn oven to 350F. Place bread in a very large bowl. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x13 casserole or a 3qt baker with butter. Set aside.

Combine the heavy cream, milk, eggs, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and raisins in a large bowl preferably with a pour spout. Whisk to mix and pour the cream mixture over the bread. Stir to combine. Allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes or so.

Transfer the bread mixture to the buttered casserole dish. Place the casserole dish inside a larger pan and fill half-way up the sides with the hottest tap water available. Cover loosely with foil, tenting so as not to touch the top of the bread pudding. Cut a few slits in the top of the foil to allow steam to escape. Bake 45 minutes covered, then remove foil and bake another 30-45 minutes more until the bread pudding poofs up. Carefully remove from the oven, remove the pan from the water bath, and allow to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature. While it’s cooling down, make the sauce.

2 cups heavy cream
½ cup whole milk
½ cup granulated white sugar
2 Tbs cornstarch
¼-½ cup bourbon or whiskey of your choice
Pinch salt
2 Tbs unsalted butter
In a 1 qt saucepan over medium heat, combine the milk, sugar, and cream. Place the cornstarch and ¼ cup of bourbon in a small mixing bowl and whisk to blend, making a slurry. Pour the slurry into the cream mixture and bring to a boil. Once the sauce begins to boil, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the sauce from the heat, add the salt and stir in the butter. Taste and add more bourbon if you’re brave enough. Store sauce and bread pudding separately and covered in the refrigerator.

*adapted from Emeril Lagasse recipe*