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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Croissant Bread Pudding with Strawberries & White Chocolate

Is it just me or did your heart skip a beat reading that title?! To be honest, bread pudding doesn’t usually excite me. Until you start talking about croissants, which changes the game entirely.

When I was in law school, I used to host a Holiday dinner or an Easter Brunch for friends who couldn’t be with their families during holidays. I liked hosting it because many generous friends had taken me in over various holidays during college (since I couldn’t afford to fly back to Hawaii) and I remember how good it felt to take part in another family for a holiday meal. On one such Easter Brunch, my friend, Claire, wowed the crowd with a chocolate croissant bread pudding.

Then, one night, I was lying in bed thinking about using up the contents of my fridge (this is kind of a menu planning ritual for me) when I remembered I had a couple of weary croissants moping about. I figured I might make a vanilla-based adaptation of that beloved chocolate croissant bread pudding.

Sometimes you just need a naughty treat. Or maybe you’re part of the sneaky folk who likes to bring the full-fat outrageously unhealthy crowd pleasers to potlucks so you can win best-in-show despite the fact that you may only have a bite or two. (I’ve been known to save up some of those recipes that I could never eat all by myself at home, so I wait for a willing group to try it out!)


* 3 croissants (preferably 1-2 days old), cut into 1-inch cubes
* 1 Tbsp. butter
* 1 cup fat-free half and half (or half & half if you prefer)
* 3 oz. white chocolate (chopped or chips)
* 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract OR seeds from 1 vanilla bean pod
* 1 egg
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 1 cup roughly chopped strawberries (fresh or frozen; other berries would be great too!)


* Heat oven to 350 degrees.
* Toast croissant cubes on an ungreased cookie sheet for 5-8 minutes or until lightly toasted. When cool, place cubes in an ungreased 8 x 8 pan or small casserole dish.
* In a saucepan on medium-high heat, bring the butter and half & half to a slow boil. Turn down the heat to a simmer and whisk in the white chocolate and vanilla.
* Once melted, remove pan from heat and let cool for 10 minutes.
* In a small bowl, mix the sugar with the egg. Slowly whisk this mixture into the half & half mixture.
* Gently mix the strawberries in with the croissant cubes.
* Pour custard mixture over the croissant and strawberries and place in refrigerator for up to 1 hour (to soak up all the goodness).
* Bake at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes or until top is lightly toasted and custard has set (no longer too wet or jiggly).

You're going to love this. Yep.


Anonymous said...

Merci d'avoir un blog interessant

Sara E Anderson said...

I have some croissants that are getting old and a lb of strawberries I need to use before leaving town tomorrow, so I googled for a recipe to use, and I'm going to do this. Thanks for sharing!

Sara E Anderson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Morgan Lee said...

Oh, I think you are going to love it!