Sunday, April 24, 2011

salted caramel bread pudding

In my head I pictured it as a nice daytrip to the city, catching up with an old friend, gracefully strolling through art museums, admiring the gorgeous weather and scenery, eating some quality meals over quality conversations, and a pleasant drive home.

...Then again, when does anything ever go as planned?

Yesterday Noosh and I took a roadtrip to DC to see Kevin, whom I haven't seen since his visit last September [if you will recall the bread pudding and apple pie that were both epically conquered within 24 hours.] Dropped the car off on the outskirts of the city, took the metro in, and made it just in time for the three of us to grab some lunch at Capital Brewery. And by 'just in time' I mean about an hour and a half after the fact, since Kevin's phone lied misinformed us about the hours of operation of a few locations.

But it was a delicious lunch just the same. Even if they did leave the sauerkraut off of my Reuben [to which I remember Kevin and Noosh asking me if it was really a pity at all that they forewent the fermented cabbage, but I happen to enjoy sauerkraut very well, thank you very much]. Would recommend for sure, if you're ever in the area.

After lunch we strolled through the city for a bit, catching up on life [I distinctly remember telling Kevin beforehand that I'll be leaving the country, but he seemed to disagree], and mid-afternoon met up with Cory and Daniel [who had driven up for the day, after sleeping in until almost 11], at the National Gallery for the Chester Dale: Impressionism to Modernism, Nam June Paik, and Canaletto and his Rivals on Venice exhibitions. [The Venice exhibit was truly breathtaking, but all three were phenomenal.]

I should also mention that I had been carrying a 16-oz baguette in my purse for the grand majority of the day, including our museum visit. Also an unopened box of light brown sugar, but that was less of an issue since it was wrapped in a plastic bag. But I was pretty positive that museum security was going to kindly request that I discard the baguette, since, I mean who in their right mind carries an unopened, enormous loaf of French bread in their bag? 

Well, I got in just fine. So that's a tip for any of you who want to visit a museum and are worried about them taking your bread away from you: it's totally chill. Does make me wonder, though, what other oddities they must see on a regular basis...

Anyway, spent a few hours there before heading back to Kevin's apartment to make dinner. Because it seems as though whenever Kevin and I are in the same vicinity, cooking a meal is inevitable. Which I am more than happy about.

Canaletto, Santa Maria della Salute and the Entrance to the Grand Canal, looking East
[not my image]

A delicious dinner of bak choy, kalbi with radishes, Cantonese tomatoes and eggs, sauteed drumsticks, and chicken gizzards. Everyone pitched in, either prepping, cooking, dish-washing, clearing the table, what-have-you, so it was a very lovely little dinner party.

Can I just say, though, that only for you, Kev, would I try a chicken gizzard. And I must say, the taste was just fine. The texture I abhorred, with a burning passion. But at least that's something else to cross of my list, eh? [Even if I plan on never letting one touch my plate again.]

the spread, in terrible lighting

Kev put me in charge of dessert, as per usual, and so I went with another bread pudding [seems to be a tradition to bake bread pudding alongside our meals? sure]: salted caramel bread pudding, to be precise. Really, all I was thinking was thank the lord I can take this poor, abused loaf of bread out of my purse.

Salted Caramel Bread Pudding
Adapted from The Comfort of Cooking

You'll need:

  • 1 (16-oz) loaf unsliced French bread
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup salted caramel sauce [homemade or store-bought]

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Using a serrated knife, slice bread into 1-inch cubes. Spread bread evenly across baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine milk, brown sugar, vanilla, eggs, and raisins. Toss toasted bread in the milk mixture until well mixed. Cover bowl and chill for at least 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Gently pour soaked bread into a greased casserole dish, cover the top with aluminum foil, and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover  and bake for an additional 10 minutes, until pudding is set. 

Pour caramel sauce into a bowl and heat for 30 seconds, or until warm. Serve with bread pudding.

The pudding is delicious. I wish I had had some more of my things over to photograph with, but Kev's gorgeous D7000 was fun enough to play with. After we thoroughly demolished the entirety of the bread pudding and salted caramel sauce, Noosh very kindly did the dishes as Cory and I played Fruit Ninja, and then the four of us [sans Kev] decided to go out for a midnight crepe run [because we needed more food after that feast, obviously] at Crepeaway. Also definitely recommend, if you're in the area [and they stay open until 4 am, I believe.]

Enjoyed some crepes, chatted some more, realized it was nearing 12:30 and we should probably head back to the metro station if we intended to leave DC that night morning, said our goodbyes, hopped on the metro, and drove home. Definitely one of the most painful late-night drives of my life, and I can hardly remember what happened between me parking the car and waking up at 1 pm this morning.

Save that it was one of the best daytrips that I can remember.

Edit: The very sweet hostess of Sweet as Sugar Cookies, Lisa, has invited me to participate in her Sweets for a Saturday with this recipe post. Thanks so much, Lisa! I'm truly honored. :)


  1. That bread pudding sounds tempting to the max. With salted caramel it would be amazing. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog and I'd like to invite you to stop by and link your pudding up.

  2. Love bread pudding! Yours looks amazing. Sounds like you had a great weekend too!


Thanks so much for reading!
I'd love to hear your thoughts :)