Jan likes flax bread, but because of her oral surgery she did not eat the loaf that I bought her last week at the Farmer’s Market. The loaf is now stale. It is either throw it away and waste the bread or do what cooks have been doing with stale bread for centuries, bread pudding.
Jan adapted her recipe from one she found on-line, but I was unable to find it again. Partly because the copy she gave to me had already had so many changes that it was unrecognizable to the original. The other reason is that I discovered that when you bring three cooks together, they have four bread pudding recipes between them.
Not to outdone, Jan altered the recipe she found to please herself. In addition to the flax bread, she decided to use almond meal and golden raisins. She also used the most recent version of my orange infused sugar.
I looked at easily a hundred bread pudding recipes, looking for the original. This was not as hard as it might seem, because I found a very interesting site, Foodily.com. This site gathers recipes from all over the internet and brings the ingredients lists together side by side.
After you search for a recipe, you see a picture of each dish. You see where the recipe came from, how many ingredients are in the recipe and the first few ingredients in the list. If you want more information, you can click to see the complete ingredients list. At the bottom of each list is the nutritional information for that recipe.
On the home page you can search for multiple words in the title or ingredients list. You can even exclude one item in the search, like gluten or oil. To test this search I tried something I though would be challenging “Bulgarian Beef without oil.” In less than a second I had three recipes to compare side by side.
Note: see Jan’s Bread Pudding Pancakes.
Jan’s Orange Almond Flax Bread Pudding
1 cup half and half cream
1 cup Greek yogurt
1 Tbs. butter, melted
2 tsp. cinnamon, ground
2 tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. nutmeg, fresh grated
½ tsp. kosher salt
¼ tsp. almond extract
¼ tsp. orange extract
Pinch cloves, ground
1 cup almond meal (finely ground almonds)
½ cup Karl’s Mandarin Orange Infused Sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 lb. loaf of flax bread, cubed
½ cup golden raisins
3 Tbs. almonds, chopped fine
1. Put the eggs in a large mixing bowl and whisk them lightly.
2. Add the cream and yogurt and whisk to combine.
3. Whisk in the melted butter.
Tip: The butter will most likely congeal into little lumps, but do not be concerned with this.
4. Whisk in the cinnamon, vanilla, nutmeg, salt, almond and orange extracts, and the cloves.
5. In a separate medium sized bowl, add the almond meal, sugar, and baking soda. Mix to combine thoroughly.
6. Mix the bread cubes, raisins and almonds into the other dry ingredients.
Note: After it was cooked Jan decided that instead of raisins she should have used candied orange peel bits, to enhance the orange flavor. The raisins also tended to burn when we were making the puddng as pancakes.
7. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
Note: This mixture will be really wet. This is as it should be.
8. Pour the pudding mix into a Pam-ed, or buttered, casserole dish that is large enough to take all of the pudding.
Tip: You want at least a quarter of an inch between the top of the pudding and the lip of the casserole. Otherwise, it might spill over onto your oven as it bakes. I always bake with a large baking tray on the lower rack to catch any drips. It is easier to clean a baking tray than a whole oven.
9. Pre-heat your oven to a 350° F.
10. Let the pudding stand for ten to 15 minutes.
Tip: This rest allows the bread and almond meal to absorb some of the excess liquid. You do not want to delay too long or the chemical reactions of the baking powder will be spent.
10. Cover the casserole with tin foil.
11. Put the bread pudding in the oven and bake for 25 minutes, until the center no longer jiggles, but it is not completely set.
12. Remove the foil and increase the temperature to 350° F.
13. Bake for another 15 minutes, until the top is golden brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
14. Let the pudding cool for ten minutes and scoop out to serve warm or chill completely and serve as slices.