IT’S LEMON SEASON!
This is a great bread pudding recipe we use often at our school. The recipe is from Roland Mesnier’s Dessert University book. Chef Mesnier is the former Executive Pastry Chef of the White House. It has been an honor to be friends and colleagues of Roland Mesnier.
Executive Director/Classic Cooking Academy
BRIOCHE BUTTER PUDDING WITH DRIED BLUEBERRIES AND LEMON SAUCE
One 8 x 4 inch Brioche Loaf (Store bought is okay)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ cups dried blueberries (Fresh blueberries won’t work here; their juice would make the pudding too watery)
6 large eggs
Pinch of salt
¾ cup sugar
1 quart whole milk
2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise, or ½ tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups Light Lemon Sauce (recipe below)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Cut the ends off the brioche loaf and discard them. Slice the brioche into ten ¾ inch thick slices. Trim the crusts from each slice and cut each slice in half. Butter one side of each piece of brioche.
- Butter a 7×12 inch baking dish and arrange the blueberries in an even layer on the bottom of the dish. Arrange the brioche slices, buttered side up, overlapping them slightly, over the blueberries.
- Whisk the eggs, salt, and sugar together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Place the milk in a medium saucepan. Use a sharp paring knife to scrape the seeds from the inside of the split vanilla beans. Add the seeds and the beans (or the extract) to the milk. Very slowly bring the milk to a boil over medium-low heat. Remove the pan from the heat and let rest 5 minutes to extract all of the flavor from the vanilla pods and seeds.
- Slowly whisk the hot milk into the egg mixture. Pour the custard through a fine-mesh strainer over the bread. Press the bread down with the back of a large spoon so that it is completely soaked.
- Line a roasting pan with a few sheets of brown paper or newspaper. Place the dish in the pan, and carefully transfer the pan to the oven. Add enough hot tap water to the pan to reach halfway up the sides of the dish. Bake until the custard is set around the edges but still a little wobbly in the center when gently shaken, 30 to 40 minutes.
- Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the brioche pudding cool in the water for 15 minutes. Then remove the baking dish from the roasting pan and let it stand another 10 to 15 minutes. Serve warm with Light Lemon Sauce.
LIGHT LEMON SAUCE
Makes 1 ½ cups
1 tablespoon cornstarch
½ cup sugar
1 cup boiling water
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Mix the cornstarch and sugar together in a small saucepan. Whisk in the boiling water. Place the pan on the stove and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice, lemon zest, and butter. Transfer the sauce to a bowl, and cool to room temperature