Anyone who knows me knows that I love bread pudding. And those who know me well know I also love French toast, especially baked French toast. In fact, I prefer the baked version to the “real thing”. I’m not much of a morning person, so I like the idea of mixing up the French toast the night before, popping in the oven while I have my first cup of coffee, and having breakfast ready by the time everyone else is up and around.
So, when I found a recipe in Around My French Table that combines both of these into one recipe, I couldn’t wait to try it. I had just made Dorie Greenspan’s brioche and had a loaf left over, just waiting to be made into coupétade.
I began by mixing up the French toast ingredients, which consisted of eggs, milk, and sugar. After soaking the brioche, I cooked it on the griddle in plenty of butter.
After the French toast was finished, I cut each slice in half diagonally, and arranged the pieces in the pan. Then I mixed up the custard ingredients — eggs, sugar, vanilla, and milk. I poured this over the French toast and allowed it soak for a few minutes, so the bread would absorb some of the custard. The recipe called for dried fruit, which I put on half of the pan, as I knew my girls would like it better plain.
I baked the pudding in a water bath for about an hour and a half, until the custard was set. The house smelled amazing while the pudding was baking, and I was excited to try it once it cooled.
So, how did it taste? It was quite good. But not nearly as good as my N’awlins Bread Pudding. In fact, it tasted like one of my baked French toast recipes, which is fine, but not what I was expecting from bread pudding. It seemed more like a breakfast bake than a dessert. And unlike my typical baked French toast, I had gone to the effort of frying the French toast first and so was expecting something more.
So,while I enjoyed it, and we ate most of it over the next few days, this isn’t a recipe I’m likely to repeat. But I will definitely use Dorie’s brioche the next time I make baked French toast or bread pudding.
This post participates in French Fridays with Dorie. Check out the website to see what others thought of this recipe.