Thursday, December 27, 2012

Winter Treats

Golden bread pudding

fresh pandoro

Pandoro is a festive holiday cake in Italy. It is most often eaten on its own, and is more than satisfying. The following recipe might, therefore, be considered a case of gilding the lily... but if it's ever worth going all out, Christmas is probably the right season. Here, then, is our yeasty, citrus-y take on bread and butter pudding for the winter holidays.


1 pandoro (Italian Christmas yeast cake), sliced vertically, the bottom crust removed
3 eggs, beaten
a cup of full-cream milk or heavy/double cream (240 ml)
half a cup of white sugar (100 g) or less, to taste
half a cup of water
several spoonfuls of marmalade
4 tablespoons of dark rum
a few drops of vanilla essence
a capful of orange flower water, or a few drops of orange flower water essence


1. Set the oven to 150 degrees Celsius/300 Fahrenheit

2. Put the sugar in the water on a medium flame, dissolving the sugar and forming a caramel (3-5 mins.)

3. Spread a layer of marmalade on one side of each pandoro slice

4. Lay out the slices of pandoro in a greased rectangular baking tray, allowing them to overlap but forming a layer of roughly uniform height

5. Add the rum, orange water, molten sugar and vanilla to the milk (or cream)
6. Combine the eggs with the other liquid ingredients and pour over the pandoro slices
7. Allow to rest for ten minutes, so that the pandoro slices fully absorb the liquid

8. Place in the oven, and bake for twenty minutes. The top will turn golden-brown and the bottom will become a rich custard

Serve warm! - But also good cold.

Note: this can also be done with panettone, brioche bread or challah.

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