Monday, April 02, 2007

Bread and butter pudding

I got a reminder yesterday that the varied qualities of ingredients and of kitchen equipment mean that recipes cannot be definitive. The eggs, cream and milk I used in this bread and butter pudding should have set into a custard in about 40 minutes; but the eggs were smallish, and my oven dish was particularly thick. The pudding needed 20 minutes longer. Nevertheless, I offer it here, because I think that it is essentially reliable.

Serves six, in modest portions -- but it is rich.

4 slices white bread, buttered (on one side is enough, I think; I leave on the crusts, but you may prefer to remove them)
250 ml double cream
250 ml milk
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 dstsp honey
2 whole eggs
2 egg yolks

Arrange the bread in a buttered gratin dish. Warm the milk with the vanilla and honey in a small saucepan. Beat the eggs. When the milk is hot, pour a little into the eggs, whisking; pour in a little more, continuing to whisk; then add the rest. (You don't want any of the egg to scramble.) Put the dish into a roasting tin, and pour hot water into the tin to come half way up the sides of the dish; this bain-marie protects the custard touching the sides of the dish from curdling. Bake in a gas mark 3/160 C oven for 40 minutes, or until the custard is set.

The ratio of custard to bread should be quite generous on the side of the custard. Otherwise, all you get is eggy bread.

We're off to France today. I'll post from there, if our flaky dial-up connection can cope with Blogger.

No comments: