Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! This year I made full fat Pumpkin Brioche Bread Pudding with Maple Caramel Sauce and it was a huge hit. But before I brag about that, here are some of the highlights of our Indo-American Thanksgiving.
Prior to digging in, we went around the room filled with parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews and stated something we were each “thankful” for. FAMILY seemed to be the most common theme of the night. Here are my teenage nieces, they’re all growing up so fast into smart, confident, gorgeous young ladies. Ahhhh… make time stop!
And then came the MEAL…
my brother’s Corn Bread & Stuffing.
my eldest sister’s Chicken Biriyani.
my mom’s Dahi Vada (fried dough balls in a yogurt sauce topped with spices).
my elder sister’s (Mini) Rosemary Roasted Potatoes.
my aunt’s Muthiya (a Gujurati specialty).
My contribution – Crunchy Tortilla Salsa Mac & Cheese! And of course, we had some turkey from Boston Market.
DESSERT was a meal of its own. Standouts were…
my Pumpkin Brioche Bread Pudding.
Carrot Cake from Le Bonbonniere… Jersey’s finest bake shop!
my cousin’s (Nandini) Chocolate Pie baked from scratch. Mmmmmmm!
my mom’s Apple Crisp.
a fruit platter. boring.
And if you are lucky enough to have leftovers the next morning, nuke a slice for about 20 seconds and enjoy with a cup of coffee. Scrumptious!
NUTRITION: Although high in calories and fat, Brioche Bread and Half & Half are a good source of Protein. Pumpkin is rich in Vitamin A and Fiber.
* since it was Thanksgiving, I made this bread pudding full fat. For a healthier alternative, substitute Brioche Bread for some kind of soft Whole Wheat roll. Substitute Whole Milk or 2% Reduced Fat for the Half & Half. In the sauce, use 2 tbsp of butter instead of 4 tbsp (1/4 cup), reduce the Maple Syrup to 1/3 cup, and go ahead and use Whole Milk or 2% Reduced Fat instead of Half & Half. This will alter the taste slightly, but not significant enough for anyone to notice.
APPROXIMATE CALORIES PER SERVING (yields 15 squares):
- Calories: 205 cals
- Fat: 10 g
- Saturated Fat: 6.3 g
- Carbs: 23 g
- Protein: 4.4 g
- Fiber: 1.1 g
PUMPKIN BRIOCHE BREAD PUDDING w/MAPLE CARAMEL SAUCE
~ yields 15 servings baked @ 350 degrees in a 11” x 7” baking dish
for the bread pudding:
- Brioche Bread – 10.8 ounces
- Half & Half – 2 cups
- Pure Pumpkin – 1 cup
- Organic Eggs – 2
- Brown Sugar – 1/3 cup (custard) + a tablespoon to sprinkle on top
- Salt – 1/4 tsp
- Cinnamon – 1 1/2 tsp
- Nutmeg – 1/2 tsp
- All Spice – 1/4 tsp
- Bourbon – 2 tbsp (I used Whistle Pig’s Straight Rye Whiskey)
- Pecans – 1/2 cup (chopped; you can use 3/4 cup if you’d like)
* raisins would be a great addition, you can soak them in the bourbon/whiskey, 3 tbsp will suffice.
note – I haven’t tried this recipe with raisins.
for the maple caramel sauce:
- Unsalted Butter – 1/4 cup (melted)
- 100% Pure Maple Syrup – 1/2 cup
- Half & Half – 1/2 cup
- Salt – just a small pinch
4. Add the bread to the buttered dish.
5. Here are your custard ingredients sans the pecans.
6. In a mixing bowl, add the half & half, pumpkin, eggs, bourbon (whiskey), brown sugar, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, and salt.
7. Whisk it well until all the ingredients are well blended.
8. Pour the custard mixture all over the bread.
9. Using a flat wooden spoon, press the bread down into the custard making sure all the bread is evenly coated. It may appear that you need more custard, but you really don’t, trust me.
10. Now top off the bread with a little more brown sugar, perhaps just a tablespoon, not more than that.
11. Add the chopped pecans.
12. Into the oven for 40 minutes, maybe a little less depending on your oven.
13. This is what you should have.
for the maple caramel sauce:
14. Melt the butter in a pot on low-medium heat.
15. Once melted, add the maple syrup.
16. Add the half & half as well.
17. Whisk well and allow the sauce to simmer for a few minutes until it starts to bubble. Turn off the stove and the sauce will begin to thicken slightly.
18. Serve the sauce on the side, or you can pour it all over the bread pudding. Slice into cubes and serve immediately.
TELL ME: How was your Thanksgiving? What did you make? What dish is a family tradition during Thanksgiving?