Thanks to Ed Vielmetti for the shout out for Paczki Day. I'm feeling a little bad that I didn't offer up my usual annual Paczki write-up, so instead this year I am offering up my Paczki Bread Pudding recipe.
I did snag some of my own from Copernicus European Market on S. Main, and then found myself with an excess of leftovers. Having declared February to be the Pudding Month, I knew what I had to with them. I read several different bread pudding recipes and then put together my own. I'm pretty pleased with it, and I think this would work well with a variety of different pastries (especially dense ones).
I started with these...
And turned three and a half of my stale paczki (plus some stale Zingerman's challah with chocolate) into this...
Added milk, cream, eggs, and additional flavorings and got this...!
Kitchen Chick's Paczki Bread Pudding
some amounts are approximate
1/2 C sugar
4 large eggs
1/2 tsp salt
2 C whole milk (adjust for bread amount if necessary)
1 C cream
1.5 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
2 - 3 Tbs bourbon or scotch (2 Tbs will create a very subtle flavor)
1.5 Tbs melted butter and optional demerara sugar and sea salt for topping
Ideally these should be "real" paczki with that dense egg dough. I used 3 1/2 paczki (12 oz) and 5 oz of challah with chocolate, but I didn't measure the volume. Perhaps 10 cups? Basically, I used enough paczki and challah to nicely fill a deep 9x9 pan. I sliced my paczki into four slices and then cross cut that once to create fairly large pieces (see photo).
Set aside a small handful of bread pieces. I like to use smaller, crustier ones. They will go on top of the pudding at the end and will help create a nice top.
Whisk eggs and sugar and salt. Add in milk, cream, vanilla, and scotch and whisk to blend. Pour this over the remaining bread. Press and turn the bread gently so it all gets coated and let soak for 20 minutes.
Heat oven to 350 F.
Butter a 9x9 baking pan. Pour soaked bread into the pan. Top with the reserved bread pieces. Press them in a bit to make sure they are part of the pudding. Drizzle/brush the melted butter over the top. Sprinkle with some demerara sugar (1 to 2 Tbs). I also like to add a tiny sprinkle of sea salt over the top (1/4 tsp?).
Bake 45 minutes (plus or minus a bit) until the custard is set but still jiggles in the center.
- Try adding some dried cherries at the soaking stage.
- If you don't have challah with chocolate, you can add some chopped dark chocolate stirred at the soaking stage.