Sunday, November 27, 2011

Recipe: No Bake Skillet Bread Pudding

I hope that all of our American readers had a happy Thanksgiving. We had a great holiday and enjoyed a lovely Thanksgiving dinner with new friends, complete with pumpkin and pecan pies. We learned that the U.S. Embassy commissary stocks good ol' Libby's canned pumpkin and pecans for such important occasions -- thank goodness, indeed!

Over the weekend I had another food revelation: stuffing is really just a savory bread pudding or, if you prefer, bread pudding is just a sweet version of stuffing. Following the success of my skillet apple crumble and then a steamed stovetop stuffing for Thanksgiving (not the boxed brand -- please give me some credit here), I decided to try making a stovetop bread pudding with a bit of leftover stale bread that we had lying around.

Well, friends, let me just say that this recipe amazed us and may finally get me to stop complaining about not having an oven for baking. Because who needs an oven when you can make this?!

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I loosely based my creation on this recipe for a campfire bread pudding. Cooking in Nepal = cooking in the wilderness? On some days, maybe.

No Bake Skillet Bread Pudding

This recipe makes an excellent dessert or breakfast reminiscent of French toast. It is a great way to use up stale bread, especially the day after Thanksgiving. I created a distinctly un-sweet version, using only banana jam for a sweetener. If you want a very sweet dish, consider adding up to one-third cup of maple syrup, honey, or brown sugar to the bread mix before cooking. A note on cooking time: it may depend on your stove settings, so I suggest you check the pudding every so often to ensure that the bottom is browning, not burning. 

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings

INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 cups milk, plus additional for drizzling (I used coconut milk, but almond, soy, or dairy milk, if you prefer, would also work well)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
4 cups of cubed whole grain bread, preferably stale
2 egg yolks (for a vegan version, substitute chia seed eggs or flax seed eggs)
1/2 cup banana jam
1 large banana, sliced
Coconut oil (or other) for greasing pan

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Heat milk in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
2. Place bread cubes in a large mixing bowl. When milk is hot but not yet simmering, pour milk over bread cubes. Mix gently.
3. Stir in egg yolks and banana jam, mixing gently until well combined. Fold in banana slices.
4. Heat 6-inch nonstick skillet over low-medium heat. Lightly grease with coconut oil. Pour bread mixture into pan and cover.
5. Cook bread pudding covered for 15 minutes, or until bottom is browned. Then flip entire pudding onto a plate and put pudding back in skillet, uncooked side down. Cook for an additional 10 minutes or until golden brown.
6. Scoop bread pudding into bowls. If you like, drizzle with a bit of coconut milk and honey or maple syrup. It is best served hot.

A close-up -- the bread pudding is still steaming.

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It is delicious on its own.




But even better with a drizzle of coconut milk.

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The final result.

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Yum.

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