For a more
elegant presentation, you can make this dessert in individual ramekins. Use
eight medium (5-oz.) ramekins and lay plastic wrap over each one to submerge
the bread during the soaking. It's also wonderful topped with whisky sauce. Serves 8 to 10.
unsalted butter; plus 2-tsp. softened butter for baking pan
focaccia or other rusticstyle bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes and dried
3 cups milk
1 cup heavy
plus 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
1/8 tsp. grated
bean spilt lengthwise or 2-1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
eggs plus 2 yolks, at room temperature
tsp. ground cinnamon
tsp. grated nutmeg
unsalted butter, cut in small pieces
Butter an 9
x 13-inch shallow baking dish with the 2 tsp. softened butter.
In a large
skillet, melt 1 Tbs. of the butter.
the bread cubes and sauté on medium to medium-high heat until the corners are
barely golden, about 2 minutes.
cubes into the baking dish.
the remaining 1 Tbs. butter and the rest of the bread.
milk and cream into a medium saucepan.
Stir in the
sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla bean, if using.
medium high, stirring once or twice until the sugar dissolves and the milk is
vanilla extract, stir it in now.
If using a
vanilla bean, cover the sauce pan and let steep for 10 minutes.
In a large
mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs and yolks.
about 1/2 cup of the hot milk mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly.
Gradually whisk in another 1/2 cup, and then the remaining more quickly.
rubber spatula scrape any vanilla seeds from the saucepan into the custard.
custard over the bread, pushing down the cubes to moisten them all.
wrap directly on the pudding and let sit, pressing on the plastic frequently to
submerge the top layer, until the bread is thoroughly soaked, 30 to 35 minutes.
bread soaks, adjust an oven rack to the center position.
roasting pan, large enough to comfortably hold the pudding, on the rack.
Pour in hot
water to come one-quarter of the way up the sides.
oven to 350°F.
plastic wrap from the pudding.
To make the
topping, sprinkle on the raisins and press them partly into the pudding.
In a small
bowl, mix the sugar with the cinnamon and nutmeg and sprinkle this evenly over
the top. Dot the pudding with 1 Tbs. butter.
pudding in the roasting pan; if the hot water doesn't come halfway up the
sides, add more until it does.
a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes.
the water bath. Serve warm.
information (per serving): Size : based on ten servings, Calories (kcal): 440,
Fat (kcal): 25, Fat Calories (g): 230, Saturated Fat (g): 12, Protein (g): 11,
Monounsaturated Fat (g): 7, Carbohydrates (mg): 43, Polyunsaturated Fat (mg):
3, Sodium (g): 350, Cholesterol (g): 220, Fiber (g): 2,