If you’re like me and you make cute sandwiches for your kids’ lunches, you’re going to end up with a lot of bread scraps. People often ask me if I throw all those bread scraps away and the answer is: No! I do not!
Instead, I toss them all in a one gallon zip-top bag and stick it in the freezer until I can use them for something.
When it gets too full, I start looking around for recipes that use bread as a primary ingredient and yesterday I decided to make Bread Pudding with Salted Caramel Sauce from Cooking Light. I made a few changes to the original recipe. Most obviously, the recipe calls for cubes of french bread but I subbed in my freezer bread scraps (of course). We use whole wheat bread for sandwiches so it changed the character of the pudding a bit, but it was still nice. Also, the recipe calls for bourbon in both the pudding and in the sauce. I was making this to eat with my boys so I left it out of the pudding altogether and swapped in plain water in the caramel sauce. I didn’t miss the hooch at all and since I’m not a bourbon fan, I think I would have liked this dish less had I left it in. Otherwise, I stuck with the recipe pretty closely.
Bread Pudding with Salted Caramel Sauce
Recipe courtesy of Cooking Light
- 5 cups (1/2-inch) cubed French bread (about 8 ounces) (I used scraps of sandwich bread)
- 1 cup evaporated fat-free milk
- 3/4 cup 1% low-fat milk
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons bourbon (optional)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons bourbon (I subbed in water)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 6 tablespoons half-and-half, divided
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- Cooking spray
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- To prepare bread pudding, arrange bread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 8 minutes or until lightly toasted. (My bread took a little longer to toast because it was still frozen when I started toasting it.)
- Combine evaporated milk and next 7 ingredients (through eggs) in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Add bread cubes. Let stand 20 minutes, occasionally pressing on bread to soak up milk.
- To prepare sauce, combine brown sugar, 3 tablespoons bourbon, and butter in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Simmer 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves, stirring frequently. Stir in 5 tablespoons half-and-half; simmer 10 minutes or until reduced to about 1 cup. Remove pan from heat. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon half-and-half, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Keep warm.
- Spoon half of bread mixture into a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Drizzle 3 tablespoons sauce over bread mixture. Spoon remaining half of bread mixture over sauce. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm sauce with bread pudding.
Holy moly! This was so freaking good! The bread pudding was fine by itself, but when you add the sauce it is to die for! It kind of reminded me of a sticky toffee pudding — moist and sweet and super sticky. The kids and I polished off the bowls I photographed in about 3 seconds and then they asked for more. I made them wait to have it for dessert after dinner and they were no less enthusiastic. Augie liked it so much that he asked me to take a picture of him eating it! Ha!
That face doesn’t lie!
How do you use leftover bread?