Cleaning Out the Freezer… Et Voila Chocolate Babka Bread Pudding!

I inventoried our basement freezer this weekend and way back on the top shelf where I keep bread products, I found a loaf of chocolate babka.  Not any chocolate babka, but babka from Zabar’s in NYC.  Grace sent it in a gift box for my mom’s birthday in September; since we had lots of chocolate babka left over from when she came in August for our trip to the shore, I had popped this goodie into the freezer.

I decided it would be a perfect candidate for bread pudding.  Think about that– layers of chocolate and bread, soaked in a custard and baked til fluffy and creamy with a chocolate brown crust.  I usually make my bread pudding from a one pound loaf of French bread or challah, so I knew how much eggs and milk to use; I reduced the amount of sugar I used and just for fun, used dark brown instead of regular white granulated sugar.  The pudding bakes low and slow for over an hour until a knife slipped into the center comes out clean.

Chocolate Babka Bread Pudding

  • 1 loaf of chocolate babka (at least 1 lb, my loaf was 22 oz)
  • 5 eggs
  • 4 cups of half and half (or any combination with milk and cream)
  • 1/2 c dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 TB vanilla

Cut up the babka into 1 inch chunks/cubes:

Cubes of chocolatey goodness!

Cubes of chocolatey goodness!

In a medium mixing bowl (I used a batter bowl measuring cup) beat 5 eggs, then add the half and half.

Custard base

Custard base

Add the brown sugar and whisk until dissolved:

Whisk thoroughly

Whisk thoroughly

Add the cinnamon and vanilla and blend again:

Lots of vanilla

Lots of vanilla

Place the babka pieces into a casserole that has been sprayed with cooking spray, then pour the custard over the cubes.  Use a spoon to ensure all cubes are soaked in the custard.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 1/2 hours.

Make sure all pieces have been coated with the custard.

Make sure all pieces have been coated with the custard.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Place pudding in the preheated oven and bake for 1 hr and 15 minutes, or until pudding is brown and puffy, and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

The chocolate aroma is everywhere!

The chocolate aroma is everywhere!

Let cool briefly, then serve.  You can also cool and refrigerate; slice or scoop out portions and reheat to serve.

What could be better than a chocolate bread pudding on a winter day?

What could be better than a chocolate bread pudding on a winter day?

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Filed under Baked Goods, Desserts, Family, Food

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