When asked for her favourite dessert recipe, President’s Choice executive chef, Dana Speers pointed to a traditional British treat with a classic Canadian touch.
“I love this recipe because it brings together two of my favourite comfort-food cuisines,” she says. “The rich, custardy pudding is an old English tradition, while the sweet maple syrup flavour is unmistakably Canadian.”
Maple Bread and Butter Pudding
2 tbsp (25 ml) unsalted butter, softened
1 pkg (600 g) PC Maple Flavoured Loaf
1/2 cup (125 ml) unsalted butter, softened
1 pkg (140 g) dried apricots, thinly sliced
2 cups (500 ml) whole milk
2 cups (500 ml) 35% whipping cream
1/8 tsp (0.5 ml) salt
2 vanilla beans, sliced in half lengthwise
1/2 cup (125 ml) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (50 ml) apricot jam
1. Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C). Grease 13” x 9” (3 L) glass baking dish with 2 tbsp (25 ml) butter.
2. Discard end slices of loaf. Spread 1/2 cup (125 ml) butter evenly over one side of each bread slice. Arrange six of the bread slices, buttered side up, in a single layer on the bottom of prepared dish. Cut a seventh slice in half and wedge in among other slices to fill the bottom of the dish; sprinkle half of the apricots evenly over the top. Repeat with remaining seven bread slices and apricots for a second layer; set aside.
3. Combine milk, cream and salt in a large saucepan. Using the tip of a sharp knife, scrape vanilla seeds into pan; add seedless vanilla bean pods. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often. Once boiling, remove from heat. Whisk together eggs and sugar in large bowl for about 1 minute or until pale yellow. Gradually whisk in 1 cup (250 ml) of the hot milk mixture until combined. Slowly whisk in remaining milk mixture until fully combined. Pour custard through fine sieve into large bowl; discard vanilla bean pods.
4. Pour strained custard over the top of the bread. Using a spatula, gently press down on bread slices so they soak up custard. Place dish in a large roasting pan; add enough warm water to pan to come halfway up the sides of the baking dish.
5. Bake in centre of oven for 40 to 45 minutes, pressing bread down gently with spatula at halfway point, or until puffed and set around edges with a slight jiggle in centre. Transfer pudding in water bath to rack to cool.
6. Meanwhile, heat jam with 2 tbsp (25 ml) water in small saucepan over low heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until liquefied. Carefully remove pudding from water bath; brush surface with warmed jam. Serve hot or at room temperature.
Makes 16 servings
More recipe ideas are available online at pc.ca.