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For this recipe i use canned pineapple rings and the juice i save the juice in the can to add to my custard to enhance the pineapple flavor. Canned fruit is ideal here since it will give you even sliced and fruit picked and peak ripeness.
Use your favorite day old baguette or bolillo. When making bread pudding you want a harder bread, something that will stand up to the custard and absorb it without falling apart. Ideally, you want to use bread that been sitting out for the day prior so that the air dries out the bread resulting in maximum custard absorption!
Evaporated milk is exactly as it sounds. It’s milk that has been reduced and concentrated. The naturally occurring sugar in the milk caramelizes and leaves you with a richer nuttier milk. Evaporated milk can be on the bitter side if too much is used so you want to use in conjunction of another rich dairy like half and half or milk.
Half and half is a great addition to the bread pudding since it has a little more body than milk. Using just milk is fine if that is all that you have on hand but the half and half is a combination of both milk and cream they leave you with a richer custard.
Egg does two things in a bread pudding. First it helps combine the bread pudding together and also the eggs added to the evaporated milk and half and half make the custard a lot richer.
Nutmeg and cinnamon are nutty and woody aromatics; they give a deeper richness to the vanilla, combined together to create magic.
Vanilla adds a little extra sweetness and lightness to the dish. The vanilla cuts through the cream and sugar to highlight the flavors of the spices of the nutmeg and cinnamon.
Use your favorite rum on hand for this recipe. I used a Caribbean white rum. You just need a splash of rum to taste the difference in the custard. Adding too much may result in a boozy bread pudding.
Brown and white sugar are both used in this recipe. Brown sugar adds a sweet stickiness once it begins to cook and bubbles while white sugar hardens at the top and bottom resulting in a nice crust around the entire dessert.
when preparing the bread pudding it is important to add butter to the pan to keep it from sticking then to dust the butter in white sugar. white sugar is ideal since it will harden and caramelize. after dusting the pan with butter and sugar then add in the pineapples followed by the custard soaked bread placed on top
when making the custard, I like to prepare the custard in a separate bowl from the bread so that i can slowly add the liquid to the bread to make sure i don’t over saturate it. reserve the pineapple juice from the can of pineapple. the additional juice will add a mild pineapple flavor to the bread pudding itself. combine the rum, half and half, evaporated milk, vanilla, eggs and spices before adding it to the bread.
in baking canned fruit is ideal, mainly because its moisture controlled and the fruit is picked at its ripest so you’ll have consistent results. fresh pineapple will need a little more help breaking down than canned and the juice from the can is used in the custard.
some people prefer a wetter bread pudding which is totally fine. if you prefer a wetter bread pudding you can add a couple extra splashes of half and half over the top once the bread pudding is place in the pan but before it is put into the oven before you start to cook it. you can also make a caramel sauce to finish it off after.