I don’t know what it is, whether it’s a subconscious yearning to be back to the richness and extravagence of Christmas food, or a coping mechanism for the January blues, but all my recipe ideas this week have been as far from the healthy new year ones I had imagined I would be sharing as is possible.
Bread and butter pudding, the ultimate classic! My recipe, while not completely original (you don’t mess with the classics!), has added richness in the form of white chocolate and marmalade. Both add a beautiful sweetness, and for those who aren’t fond of marmalade, I urge you to try this recipe before changing to an alternative. The marmalade really cuts through the heaviness of the custard and chocolate which no other preserve I tried could match. My mother, the queen of puddings, was won over in a single bite, I hope you are too!
220ml full-fat milk
*If you don’t have a vanilla pod, you can use 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste or vanilla essence.
Zest of ½ lemon
100g unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 slices of bread, sliced and halved or ripped into equal sized chunks*
*This is where you can use up whatever stale bread you have.
*I like to use white chocolate chips to save chopping but if you don’t have them, roughly chop the same amount from a bar of white chocolate
100g of marmalade
2 tablespoons caster sugar
80ml double cream
2 tablespoons brown sugar
½ tablespoon ground cinnamon
Pre-heat your oven to 180C and butter a large baking dish.
Add the milk to a small pan along with the vanilla pod and simmer over a medium heat. After about five minutes, take it off the heat, remove the vanilla pod (keep it for another recipe, or add it to 600g of caster sugar in a sealed jar and you will have gorgeous vanilla sugar within a week) and add the lemon zest.
Butter your bread slices/chunks on one side and assemble in the dish in overlapping layers, adding some white chocolate and teaspoons of the marmalade to each layer. Keep going until your dish is full.
Beat two tablespoons of the caster sugar with the eggs until well mixed. Add the milk mixture and the double cream and continue to beat well until it is combined.
Start by slowly pouring half of the egg mixture over the assembled bread pieces. Leave it to soak in for 10 minutes, then return and add the rest of the milk mixture. It may seem soggy at this stage, but a lot more will be absorbed when it cooks in the oven.
Mix the brown sugar with the ground cinnamon and sprinkle it evenly over the top of the pudding.
Bake the pudding in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes and let it rest (if you can!) for ten minutes before serving. Enjoy!