It is strange, but growing up bread pudding and rice pudding were staples in our home as they were probably my fathers all time favorite desserts. I rarely, if ever, make this type of dessert myself but decided to try my hand at making a chocolate bread pudding for Jamie’s Monthly Mingle on February 18th over on her lovely Life’s A Feast food blog. This recipe is pretty large and can serve 10 people, but is easily divided in half if you do not want something so large. It can be baked in a large casserole or 13 X 9 inch baking pan, although I baked mine in some cute little individual cast iron dishes I had hanging around to use for something just like this.
I originally was just going to focus on chocolate and bread which are the two ingredients one needs to use for this challenge, but I recently bought a jar of powdered espresso from King Arthur Flour and wanted to incorporate that into this dessert as well. Of course, the combination of chocolate and coffee flavors gives one more of a mocha flavor than chocolate, which luckily worked out really well in this dessert. Since I am watching what I eat right now (I WON’T use the d*** word), I didn’t serve this dessert with anything aside from a dollop of light whipped topping, but it would be amazing served with a scoop of either coffee or vanilla ice cream. This dessert is best served warm so the chocolate chunks throughout are deliciously melted when you enjoy it. If you prefer making this bread pudding with just chocolate, skip the addition of the coffee liqueur and espresso powder. This is a great dessert to make when entertaining because you can throw all the ingredients together ahead of time, and then bake it while you are eating dinner.
Deborah Mele 2011
- 1 Loaf Italian Bread, Cut Into Cubes (About A 1 Pound Loaf)
- 2 1/2 Cups Milk
- 3/4 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1/2 Cup Coffee Flavored Liqueur
- 1 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
- 1/4 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 Tablespoon Powdered Espresso
- 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
- 6 Large Eggs, Lightly Beaten
- 1 1/2 Cups Dark Chocolate Chunks (Chopped Fine)
- Whipped Cream or Ice Cream
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. and lightly grease a large casserole or a 13 X 9 inch cake pan.
- Toss the bread with the chopped chocolate and place in the pan.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the other ingredients until frothy and pour over the bread cubes and gently press the bread into the egg mixture.
- Allow to rest at least 30 minutes so the bread can absorb most of the egg mixture.
- Bake for about 1 hour or until the pudding is set and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Serve warm with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of ice cream.