Croissant Bread Pudding

This is a melt in your mouth, OMG I have died and gone to heaven kind of dessert! The night I made this batch I got home late from work, the boys had been busy all day with soccer practice and getting packed for their yearly camping trip and we were all a bit tired and cranky.  I had two recipes I really wanted to make that night and I almost pushed this off for a bit.  Dear heavens that would have been a huge mistake.  As soon as we could smell the chocolate melting in the oven, our moods started to shift a little.  By the time our spoon with the first bite hit our mouths we were all laughing and the hard day was soon forgotten!  That is the power of a good desert!
6 mini croissants
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup 1/2 & 1/2
1 tbs powdered vanilla and 2 tsp of powdered vanilla beans (you can substitute with 2 split vanilla beans or you can try with liquid extract)
6 ounces semi sweet baking chocolate chopped in small pieces

Heat oven to 325.  Cut the croissants into 1" pieces and place on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake 10 minutes.  Shake and toss around and bake 8 minutes more. Til nice and golden and crunchy.Beat yolks and sugar in a mixing bowl. Heat both the creams and the vanilla in a sauce pan till just almost hot. Pour into the egg mixture.  Don't let the cream get too hot or the eggs will curdle.
Divide the cubed croissants and the chocolate evenly in  6 ounce ramekins or make one batch in a 1 quart baking dish. Pour custard mix evenly in each ramekin.  To make sure your pudding cooks evenly you need to bake it in a water bath.
Place filled ramekins in a 9x19 baking dish and pour in HOT water till about 1/2" to top of ramekins. Be careful not to splash any water into the ramekins. Place in the oven uncovered and bake at 325 for 40 min.  Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream! Delish! Decadent! Amazing! Family Mood Lifter! Dessert!



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