Cranberry Bread Pudding with Pumpkin Spiced Creme Anglaise

By • November 11, 2010 • 16 Comments

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Author Notes: I love bread puddings in all their forms, they are to me, the ultimate comfort dessert. For this dish, I took an elegant and rich white chocolate bread pudding, studded it with sweet-tart cranberries, and finished the whole thing with a creme anglaise made with pumpkin pie spices that just screams Thanksgiving. The combination would be a knock-out addition to any holiday spread.Oui, Chef

Serves 12

for the bread pudding

  • 1 loaf, challah or brioche bread
  • 1 pound high quality white chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, or 1 tablespoon vanilla paste
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 7 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
  • 1 1/2 cups pecans, roughly chopped

for the pumpkin spiced creme anglaise

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split or 2 teaspoons vanilla paste
  1. For the bread pudding: Preheat the oven to 325? degrees. Cut the bread into 1 inch cubes and place in a large mixing bowl. Toss in the chopped white chocolate, nuts and cranberries, and mix to distribute.
  2. Combine the milk, cream, and vanilla paste and bring to a boil over medium heat. Whisk the eggs in a medium sized bowl with the sugar until light ribbons form. Add hot milk mixture to eggs slowly, whisking constantly to temper. Strain custard over bread, chocolate, nuts and berries, and let stand for 10-15 minutes to allow custard to soak into the bread.
  3. Pour the mix into a buttered 9”X13” baking dish and place the baking dish in another, larger roasting pan. Pour hot water into larger pan to reach 1 inch up side of the baking dish. Bake the bread pudding for about 1 hour, until custard is set and the top is golden. Remove from the oven and lift the baking dish from the hot water bath, let cool on a rack.
  4. For the crème anglaise: Prepare a clean bowl set over an ice bath, and set it aside along with a fine mesh strainer.
  5. Whisk together sugar, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, nutmeg, cardamom, and egg yolks until light yellow and frothy. Set aside. Heat the half-and-half and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat until it begins to simmer.
  6. Whisk a small amount of half-and-half into the egg yolk mixture to temper, then whisk the remaining half-and-half into the egg yolk mixture. Pour the combined egg and half-and-half mixture back into the saucepan and heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it just begins to simmer. Do not let the mixture boil. Gently cook until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. ??Remove from heat and strain though the fine mesh strainer into the bowl set over ice. Stir occasionally until cool, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.
  7. Serve the bread pudding warm, drizzled with a few spoonfuls of the spiced creme anglaise.
Jump to Comments (16)

Tags: chocolate, Holidays, kid-friendly, serves a crowd, Spring, sweet

Comments (16) Questions (0)

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3 days ago Susan Dahl

Tastes even better than it looks...a really decadent dessert. For all non-lovers of white chocolate - don't let the white chocolate discourage you from making this dessert. The white chocolates melts into the dessert and I am not sure I even tasted the white chocolate except that it was an incredibly rich tasting dessert and that might have been due to the white chocolate. I don't really like white chocolate either but this dessert was fantastic. I might try cutting the white chocolate in half next time I make it to save on both calories and cost but this recipe was so good that I am not sure I want to mess with it. Made the anglaise two days before and also prepped the bread, cranberries, pecans and chocolate at the same time. Cut down the actual evening off prep time to a minimum which was a good thing since I was having company.

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about 4 years ago Threemealsaday

Bread pudding is a favorite in our house and you have made it into a more beautiful dessert that one could ever imagine. Great presentation. Did you cut this with a cake mold?

Stuart

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about 4 years ago cookinginvictoria

Wow, this looks and sounds amazing. Oui Chef, I really love your recipes. I also adore bread pudding (not to mention cranberries). I think that I will have to try this.

Birthday_2012

about 4 years ago luvcookbooks

Meg is a trusted home cook.

not a white chocolate fan, either, but this looks like a great recipe. my brother in law the bread pudding fanatic's birthday falls the day after thanksgiving this year, think i will make it as a gift/dessert for his party, thanks!!

Steve_dunn02

about 4 years ago Oui, Chef

You're welcome....I'm sure your fanatic will love it! Thanks - S

Mrs._larkin_370

about 4 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Dee-Lish!

Steve_dunn02

about 4 years ago Oui, Chef

Thanks, mrslarkin. Not only was I pleased with the flavors in this dish, but I love bread pudding for how you can make 1 big batch, then cut it into individual servings for a special "holiday" presentation. - S

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about 4 years ago lapadia

Exquisite! I am not usually a white chocolate person either, but there are exceptions and this would be one of them...thanks for sharing your recipe!

Steve_dunn02

about 4 years ago Oui, Chef

Thanks, lapadia. To be honest, I'm not much of a white chocolate guy myself, and really only like it in dishes where there are some contrasting flavors to cut its sweetness. In this dish, the earthiness of the nuts, spice of the creme anglaise, and tartness of the berries do that nicely. I also have a cookie recipe that I LOVE which gets the job done with a blast of salt, nuts and heath bar bits...they are salty-sweet heaven. - S

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about 4 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Breathtakingly beautiful . . . especially on that cobalt plate. I might just have to overcome a longstanding aversion to white chocolate to give this one a ride . . . . . ;o)

Steve_dunn02

about 4 years ago Oui, Chef

Thank you, AntoniaJames. If you can tolerate the white stuff at all, I urge you to give it a go. The creme anglaise would be good with almost any holiday dessert you serve. - S

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about 4 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

really delicious. i'm thinking breakfast.

Steve_dunn02

about 4 years ago Oui, Chef

Thanks, drbabs.....sure beats Special K. - S

Newliztoqueicon-2

about 4 years ago Lizthechef

Lovely - thumbs up!

Newliztoqueicon-2

about 4 years ago Lizthechef

Back again, this is my winner.

Steve_dunn02

about 4 years ago Oui, Chef

WOW....thanks, Lizthechef! I am humbled by your vote of confidence given the sheer number, and quality, of dishes posted this week. I hope you get a chance to try it one day. - S