Need help with bread pudding recipe
I'd like to try making a pina colada bread pudding. The recipe calls for 1 loaf of French bread with crusts removed. Doesn't French bread come in different sizes? And aren't they rather slender so what would I be left with after I remove the crusts? How many ounces/pounds of bread do you think I should buy? The recipe calls for 3 eggs and about 3 cups of liquid. Thanks for any help provided.
The slender "French bread" is a baguette. You want a regular sized loaf.
A good bakery will have what you're looking for. It doesn't have to be of French heritage. Italian will do as well.
Pina colada bread pudding sounds awfully interesting. Perhaps you could post the recipe on the HC board.
I guess it depends upon the type of loaf.
A baguette is long & slender. A flute is long & fatter. An Epi has more crust. A boule is round & comes in various sizes.
Is this recipe French? I sort of doubt it given that its pina colada.
Three eggs & three cups of bread makes it sound like about a pound of bread to me as a guess. As Uncle Bob says I'd leave the crust on for sure.
As it happens we had bread pudding at our local restaurant today as the dessert to our lunch. Delicious, here they call it pain perdu (lost bread). This had raisins in it & a caramel sauce. We loved it.
Good luck with your effort.
Bread pudding is forgiving. For 3 cups liquid and 3 eggs, try 6-7 cups. I'd guess because it's for a pina colada bread pudding, it doesn't matter if you use a baguette or a larger loaf of "french bread" that you'd find in any grocery store. I'd go for the larger loaf, less crust.
Since the subject of bread pudding has come up, I can use some advice. For a church project, I make bread pudding in 9 x 12 foil pans that provide 12 portions each. I don't have a recipe for the quantity I require and so am winging it. If I use 8 slices of bread per pan the consistency is too watery, but more than that makes the pudding too stiff. Also if I fill the pans as full as I dare without spilling all over the oven, the pudding puffs up like a souffle when it bakes, rising a good two inches beyond the rim of the pan, but as it cools it flattens down to a depth of about 1 1/2 inches so that servings don't look very substantial. I am using 6 eggs and 4-5 cups milk per pan of pudding. I would like a puddingy consistency firm enough to be spooned out, not cut into squares, when it's served. Also I would love to deliver pans that are full nearly to the top. Any advice regarding proportions?
Either America's Test Kitchen or Cook's Country did bread pudding not long ago - you should be able to find the explanation and recipe free either on their sites or elsewhere by googling it.
The important thing was that it is better to cube and dry FRESH bread in the oven on very low heat than to use stale bread. It has a scientific explanation to the effect that oven-drying evaporates the water in the bread, so that it can absorb more of the custard mixture, making the bread pudding more tender and tasty. When bread stales naturally, the starch crystallizes but entraps the water. That is why you can restore the moisture of seemingly dry, day-old bread by briefly reheating it. The crystal structure comes apart and the moisture becomes available again.
I memory serves, they also concluded that challah or a good quality supermarket white bread (e.g. Pepperidge Farm) makes for the best bread pudding. French and Italian didn't have enough body, rustic loaves too chewy, and brioche too greasy.
That's interesting, about oven-dried vs room air-dried---thanks for posting it. I usually use cinnamon raisin bread. Since I make a large quantity for a church feeding program (free dinner for the needy) cost control is an issue so that challah and artisan breads aren't likely.
It could easily mean one of those fluffy, ubiquitous "French" loaves that are available hot out of the oven around 4-6. Or get them the next day. They have a thin, soft crust if bagged in plastic.
One can removes that or keep it on to give the pudding some "oomph."
I also like to use a crustier/artisan type loaf, but it's chewier. It depends on one's personal preference, and how long you want to soak the bread.