A lot of people ask how I cook, especially as I have to consider The Herb's dietary requirements, and my answer is always: Easily!
Just because you have to consider your ingredients, does not mean you have to compromise on what you eat. if anything, it will make you a better cook, as you get to explore ideas and combinations you never would have tried before. This is how I came up with this interesting take on Bread and Butter Pudding.
For the Bread Pudding:
- Enough slices of bread to have 3 layers in your chosen dish (we have 10 slices in this pud)
- 100g dairy free butter
- large pinch of dried cinnamon and dried ginger (more or less depending on your taste)
- 50g mixed chopped nuts
- 125g dried morello cherries
- 50g dark chocolate chips (check the packaging to make sure there is no milk added)
For the chocolate custard:
- 800ml chocolate oat milk
- 5 tablespoons cornflour
- 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
- a dash of vanilla extract / vanilla pod
Build the Pudding
- Mix your dairy free butter, ginger and cinnamon together in a bowl. Make sure it's well combined and you don't have any clumps of spices.
- Spread generously on to your bread, making sure that you get right to the edges. Cut the slices in half down the centre of the bread.
- Grease an oven-proof dish with the remaining butter / spice mixture.
- Create a flat layer of bread on the bottom of your serving dish. Sprinkle over half of the chocolate chips, half of the nuts and half of your dried cherries.
- Add another layer of bread, and sprinkle over the remaining nuts, cherries and chocolate.
- Add the remaining bread. Create ridges on this layer by stacking your slices like roof tiles. They will need to have the edge of your crust sticking upwards.
Make the Custard
- Gently heat 550ml of your chocolate oat milk over a low heat in a large pan.
- Mix the cornflour and the rest of the cold oat milk together. Make sure there are no lumps.
- Add the sugar to the heated milk and stir gently until dissolved.
- Slowly pour in the cold milk and cornflour mixture. Stir well until well combined.
- Add your vanilla extract (or vanilla pod if you are using it) and keep stirring over your low heat until the mixture has thickened. When you pick up some of the mixture on the back of your spoon, run your finger through it and it will keep a solid line when ready. (Please be careful when you do this, do not burn your finger like I did )
It's time to bake
- Pour the custard over your bread and filling. Move the bread around so that your custard covers all of the dry bread. Make sure there aren't any dry bits.
- Leave for 20-30 minutes so that the custard softens your bread.
- Bake in preheated oven at 185c for 35 minutes.
Testimony from The Herb:
This Black forest bread and butter pudding is absolutely one of the best puddings I have ever eaten. It'd be perfect with a lovely vanilla (dairy-free) ice cream, but we did scoff it down with nothing else. It's everything you need when the weather is gloomy, the cherries add a fruity sweetness, the nuts a little crunch and everyone needs a little bit of chocolate in their lives.