Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Meyer Lemon Bread Pudding

It’s been ten years since I became lactose intolerant. Well, it was ten years last month, and next month it’ll be ten years since I figured out what it was and actually started eating lactose-free. It’s also been five years today since I started this blog. I posted about lemon tarts, so it seems fitting to follow it up with this Meyer lemon bread pudding. I adapted the recipe from Bijoux, which I’m pretty sure I found it via Pinterest.

Now, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, there are no baguettes at the grocery store here. I ended up with a pain de campagne of sorts from the frozen section, but it worked just fine for this bread pudding. You could use Italian-style bread, brioche or challah if you wanted. I used a total of 6 Meyer lemons (3 for the curd, 3 for the pudding). The Engineer and I both loved this dessert. As always, I prefer it warm (and it makes the bread softer, too); he prefers it straight from the fridge.

For the lemon curd
5 egg yolks
¾ cup granulated sugar
zest of 2 Meyer lemons
juice of 3-4 Meyer lemons (to yield 1/3 cup juice)
1 stick vegan margarine, room temperature

For the pudding
1 French bread baguette, crusts removed, cut into 1-inch slices

2 cups lactose-free whole milk
½ cup granulated sugar

4 eggs
zest of 2 Meyer lemons
juice of 3-4 Meyer lemons (to yield 1/3 cup juice)
pinch of kosher salt

To make the lemon curd
In the top of a double boiler over a pan of simmering water, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice, whisking until the mixture is pale yellow in color and thickened slightly to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and whisk in the margarine, a tablespoon at a time, until smooth. Pour the lemon curd into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming and cool. Refrigerate (for up to 3 days).

To assemble and bake the pudding
Place the French bread slices cut sides down in a lightly buttered 10 x 8 inch oval ovenproof baking dish. Fit the bread slices together in a single layer to completely cover the bottom of the pan. Spread the top of the bread slices with the Meyer lemon curd.

Whisk together the milk, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice and pinch of salt, mixing well, and pour over the bread. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, to allow the bread to absorb the milk mixture. Remove from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes prior to baking.

Preheat the oven to 325 °F. Cover the bread pudding with foil and bake on top of a sheet pan for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake for an additional 30 minutes until puffy and golden brown.

Dust with confectioner’s sugar and serve with lactose-free whipped cream if desired.

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