Saturday, August 13

Summer Berry Bread Pudding

Confession: I love bread pudding. Obsessed with bread pudding. I never make it, (why??) but honestly a good bread pudding is one of my favorite desserts. If you think about it, it's a little gross; stale bread, covered in sugar and milk, baked in the oven. But it's so good and if it's wrong I don't want to be right.

This bread pudding is a little different. It's never baked; it's refrigerated and served cold. It's light and refreshing and perfect for summer. I originally saw the recipe here, on Melissa Clark's blog. I love her philosophy on food and her recipes are to drool over. My pudding didn't quite turn out as beautiful as hers, but nevertheless it was delicious. And that's really mostly what matters right?

I've been waiting for an excuse to make this for weeks. Then the cosmos aligned. My oven is broken (I know, it's devastating...). I went to a bbq. And it was perfect.

Melissa writes in her post that this dessert "greatly benefits from something rich on the side" and I whole-heartedly agree. She serves her pudding with Creme Anglaise, but I saw this as an opportunity to let whipped cream shine. Let me explain. You know how whipped cream is usually a garnish? Or something you squirt into your mouth while your standing with the refrigerator open? But it's never NECESSARY! I've never eaten something before, taken a step back and thought, "You know what this NEEDS? A dollop of whipped cream." But!! But!! This dessert can depend on whipped cream like whipped cream usually depends on ice cream. And it feels good (for the whipped cream, of course).

So, here is the recipe and some pictures from my attempt. It's a very easy dessert and definitely worthwhile. You can use any mix of berries that you'd like. I used currants, blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries.


fabriclive 36 mixed by james murphy and pat mahoney by julienbritnic

Summer Berry Bread Pudding
By Melissa Clark via

5 c. mixed berries (ex. currants, strawberries (sliced), blackberries & blueberries)
1/3 c. water
1/2 c. sugar
1 to 2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
10 to 15 slices soft whole wheat sandwich bread, crusts removed

In a medium saucepan, combine berries, water, and sugar. Simmer over medium heat for about 5 minutes. The berries will just begin to break down to the beginnings of a syrup. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. The mixture should be sweet, yet tart. You can adjust this to taste. 

In an 8-in loaf pan, drizzle a bit of the liquid to evenly coat the bottom of the pan. Cover this layer of liquid with a layer of bread by cutting the pieces of bread so that they fit together to cover the bottom of the pan completely. Spoon 1/3 of the fruit and liquid over this layer of bread. Repeat, layer by layer, until all of the fruit has been used. The top layer should be fruit. Allow the pudding to cool completely on the counter.

Cover the pan with a layer of plastic wrap and set a something on top to weigh everything down (I used The Other Boleyn Girl, by Phillipa Gregory). Refrigerate overnight.

To serve, cut into slices and garnish with fresh whipped cream (see below).

Fresh Whipped Cream

1 c heavy cream
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. With an electric whisk attachment or electronic mixer, beat on high until cream becomes stiff.

Merry berry


Ogres are like onions. They have lots of layers.

Berry-licious (Kerry, I thought you'd like that one)

Purple. My favorite.

Q: What do we do with all of these crusts?

A: Croutons!!

Look at that whipped cream. Star!

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