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Julia Turshen is Ready to Feed the Resistance With Bread Pudding

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Like millions of people across the country, I picked up a sign and marched for women’s rights in January. About three hours in, I had more than an activist fire in my belly. Whether you’re marching, letter-writing, or coordinating a fundraiser, fighting for what you believe in can work up an appetite.

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Celebrated writer and recipe developer Julia Turshen knows that supporting communities and causes often begins around the table. Her upcoming cookbook Feed The Resistance (out this October!) guides activist cooks through delicious, economical recipes as well as ideas for supporting causes in the worlds of food, politics, race relations, and other social issues. Plus, proceeds from the book's sale will go to the American Civil Liberties Union.


Combining food and activism comes naturally to Julia. Every Thursday morning, she and her wife, Grace, wake up before the sun comes out and drive half an hour to a church they are not members of. They roll up their sleeves in the church’s kitchen with four other people to cook and package a meal for sixty homebound people in the community.

“I have never been a morning person, but I’ve come to look forward to Thursday mornings more than any other day of the week,” Julia writes. “I love this group of people and the food we make, and it means so much to have a tangible way to give back to our community.”

Bread pudding is the perfect bridge-building catalyst.
Bread pudding is the perfect bridge-building catalyst. Photo by James Ransom

In anticipation of her book’s release, Julia shared a recipe for the bread pudding she makes at the church often. It’s the best way to stretch a ton of leftover bread into something really delicious. This recipe serves 20, but we hope you need to double, triple, or quadruple it as your community grows.

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Julia Turshen's Angel Food Bread Pudding with Butterscotch Sauce

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Serves 20

Angel Food Bread Pudding

  • Cooking spray
  • 1 pound [453 g] white or whole-wheat sandwich bread, torn or cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 pound [453 g] cinnamon-raisin sandwich bread, torn or cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 14-oz [397-g] can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup [100 g] granulated sugar
  • 4 cups [1 L] whole milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 cup [240 ml] heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 12 large eggs
  • Butterscotch Sauce

Butterscotch Sauce

  • 1 stick [8 Tbsp] unsalted butter
  • 1 cup [200 g] packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups 360 ml] heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Go to Recipe

Want to be part of the resistance now? Julia has organized a Food Team for the Kingston, NY branch of Citizen Action with volunteers preparing homemade meals for all the meetings. Donate funds to reimburse volunteers for groceries here!

Tags: bread pudding, feed the resistance, julia turshen