Thursday, December 6, 2012

Moon Pie Bread Pudding

I promised you the recipe for my world famous Moon Pie Bread Pudding in the last post, Holiday Breakfast in Bed. . . . Oh--that's right--it's not world famous. . . .but, it's what my Santa Honey calls it.
Guess it went to my head. . . .

I've been fascinated with bread puddings for years now--trying to perfect it for fire cooking, as well as in the electric oven. I'm also a thrifty person--hate to throw away anything--and that includes left-over and/or stale bread--and--of all things, Moon Pies.

At the end of each tour through the historic district, we offer everyone a mini Moon Pie. Regular Moon Pies were popular back in the 1930s because they were sweet, filling, and cheap. A cola and a Moon Pie were only 5 cents. Every year I stock up on them whenever I find a sale. At the end of the season, we inevitably have Moon Pies left. They go in the freezer for Santa Honey to snack on during the winter. He has a bad sweet tooth!

One day, I went to the freezer to get the package of left-over bread and saw all those boxes of Moon Pies. . . .Hmmmmm. . . ."Wonder what they'd taste like in the pudding?"

The Moon Pie Bread Pudding recipe was born.

I have to admit, it took me several times to perfect it. . . .Each time, John liked it. . . .but, it wasn't exactly right for me. . . .Finally, I got it!
I was happy with it. . . .John was in love with it. . . .I wrote it down. . . .

You may have to adjust to your liking. . . .but, here are the basics. . . .It's almost fool proof. . . .

Dru's Moon Pie Bread Pudding

Begin with a 9 x 9" OR 7 1/2 x 10 1/2" glass pan and grease well.
Tear left-over bread into pieces. 
If bread is too fresh, toast it a little.
I like to mix my breads--French makes the best pudding--
but I've also mixed French, white, and wheat--sometimes a
few biscuits, too. Remember--this is a thrifty recipe--so
anything goes. . . .

 Layer bread pieces in the pan, about half way up.
Place 6 whole Mini Moon Pies, any flavor, on top. 
I try to place them so that there's a Moon Pie in the center of each serving.
Fill in around the pies with more bread. Don't be stingy!

Now, make the custard. . .

Melt 3 Tablespoons butter
Whisk in 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar
Then 3 large eggs, whisk
Add 2 1/4 cups milk
(I like to use 1 cup buttermilk and 1 1/4 cups regular milk) 
Add  1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt

Pour custard over the bread mixture, and gently push Moon Pies down
enough to slightly coat with custard--don't mash the bread too much!

Let stand for 5-10 minutes, til the bread soaks up some of the custard.
Bake at 350 degrees until the pudding is set in the center--
slightly browned at the edges,
approximately 45 minutes.

As it cooks, the pudding will puff up like this--Don't let it scare you! It will go down while cooling. . . .

Drizzle a little white glaze (powdered sugar, cream or milk, a little vanilla or other flavor) over the top while hot. Serve warm or cold. Makes 6 servings.
In the photo, I topped with a few dried cranberries and whole almonds. Fudge or caramel sauce is delicious, too.

Need more than 6 servings? This recipe is easily doubled. . . .
I warn you--it disappears fast!

from my farm kitchen to yours. . . .
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