For me, bread pudding is just one of those magical concoctions. You toss together a few rustic ingredients and end up with something humbly majestic, and it’s nearly foolproof to boot. I have toyed around with about a million flavor combinations and nary a flop among them. This strawberry and rhubarb bread pudding is probably my favorite of the bunch, with its bright, tangy spring flavors bouncing off the savory bread and sweet custard. Yum.
This is super lovely topped with a strawberry-rhubarb compote, which you can make with some extra rhubarb and strawberries, just chop and simmer them on the stove, sweetened with honey, until thick. And while you’re at it, a little greek yogurt or whipped cream cann’t hurt either. I once topped this bread pudding with the compote and a mound of clotted cream—it was full-on sinful.
I like to make bread pudding in a springform pan and un-mold it when it’s ready. It’s pretty–it takes the dessert from frumpy casserole form to a dandy cake shape; but you can use a baking dish too.
2 cups organic milk (if bread is very dry, you may need to add more milk)
2 cups chopped rhubarb, leaves removed (they’re toxic!) and stalks washed
2 cups quartered strawberries, hulled and washed
1 cup honey
2 large organic eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
10 cups day-old bread cubes (challah, brioche, baguette, etc.)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Whisk milk, eggs and vanilla in large bowl to blend. Fold in rhubarb, strawberries, and bread cubes and let stand for 15 minutes. Put pudding mixture in a 9-inch springform pan.
3. Bake bread pudding until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
4. Let cool. When ready to serve, run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the sides. Remove ring from pan.
For a vegan version, see my recipe here.