Tuesday, July 24, 2012

RumChata Bread Pudding

For my birthday last month, I was presented with a large bottle of liqueur called “RumChata.” Turns out that this concoction is a blend of horchata – the delicious Mexican rice drink – and rum.  I was first introduced to horchata many years ago while eating with some friends in the “Mexicantown” section of Detroit. I immediately loved the light and delicately sweet flavor of this drink and the way it cooled my tongue from the spicy Mexican food. But as much as I love horchata, I just wasn’t sure about what was in this big white bottle.

Our friend Jennifer, who really knows her way around all these liqueurs, said that she had a recipe that used RumChata to make bread pudding. That just sounded too good to resist! While bread pudding isn’t everyone’s favorite  - especially in the hot summer months – it is something that I always enjoyed. While the pudding should certainly stand on its own, part of the appeal of bread pudding are the things you put on top of it: fresh fruit and cream, whiskey sauce, hot caramel, ice cream, etc. 

So we took Jennifer’s recipe and tweaked it a bit by adding some fresh Michigan blueberries. The season has begun and I’m lucky to have a large blueberry farm a few miles from the cottage, so we try to stay stocked up!  I found that this was good dusted with powdered sugar and served warm with some vanilla ice cream.

RumChata Bread Pudding

4-5 cups dry bread cut into large cubes (use a “white” bread that is mild flavored)
4 eggs
1 cup milk (whole milk is best)
1 cup RumChata (could also use Amaretto, Irish cream, Kahlua, Frangelico, etc.)
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp cinnamon
1 cup blueberries (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut up bread into large cubes and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine eggs, milk, RumChata, vanilla and cinnamon. Whisk together well. Add bread cubes and blueberries (if using) to liquid and gently push bread down so it all gets coated . Let the bread soak in the liquid for 15 minutes. In the meantime, grease a 8x8 baking dish. Pour bread mixture into prepared dish and bake for 35 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream!

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