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Author Notes: I invented this recipe "on the fly" as a dish to get my then fiancé to eat kale. He loved it! It is said the way to a man's heart is through his stomach - and that must be true. We have been married for over two years! —Chef Joyé LaBarge Bryan
Serves 10 - 12, or more if using muffin tins
Bread Base/Crispy Bacon and Kale:
- 1 loaf whole-wheat bread, cubed
- 1 lg Spanish onion, med dice
- 4 fresh green onions, chopped
- 1/2 packet (6 rashers) thick-cut peppered bacon, finely diced
- 1 lg bunches fresh kale, stems removed, torn in bite-sized pieces
- Bread Base: 1. Place bread cubes in very lg mixing bowl and set aside. Crispy Bacon and Kale: 1. Place Spanish and green onions with diced bacon in a lg cast-iron frying pan or wok (make sure you have a lid that will entirely cover the frying pan or wok) over med-high heat. 2. Stir-fry the onion and bacon bits until crispy and dark brown taking care not to burn the onions and bacon or you will have to start over from scratch. 3. Place the kale over the top of the onion and bacon mix and stir the mixture together, then cover with the lid, and turn the heat down to med-low. 4. Steam-reduce the kale by half, then remove the lid, turn the heat back up to med-high, and stir-fry the kale until it is crispy and dry. 5. Remove from the heat and let it come to room temp.
- 8 lg whole eggs
- 1 pint Half&Half
- 3 tablespoons Tony Chachere's Cajun Seasoning, or to taste
- 1/2 tablespoon powdered garlic, or to taste
- 1/2 tablespoon powdered onion, or to taste
- 1 - 2 tablespoons Chipotle Tabasco, or to taste
- 3 cups Mexican Cheese Mix, shredded
- salt and cracked black pepper, to taste
- whole milk, as desired
- 1 cup Mexican Cheese Mix, shredded
- Cajun Custard: 1. Either by hand or with a hand-held mixer, beat all ingredients together, except the shredded cheeses and whole milk, together until well incorporated. 2. Carefully fold in the first portion of shredded cheese. 3. Clean/wash hands. 4. Pour custard over the bowl of bread and mix in with clean hands. 5. Clean/wash hands. 6. Pour room temp bacon and kale mixture over the bread and custard mixture and mix in with clean hands until thoroughly incorporated. 7. Clean/wash hands. 8. Preheat oven to 350F. 9. Cover the bowl with Cling-Film and refrigerate for abt 20 mins. 10. Spray lg baking dish or lg cast-iron frying pan with Pam. 11. Remove pudding from refrigerator and spoon into prepped dish or frying pan. 12. Spread remaining cup of cheese over the top of the pudding (you can add more if you desire). 13. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. 14. Cut and serve warm. Chef's Note: These puddings can be made in paper-lined muffin or cupcake tins for individual portions/presentations.