I’m always on the lookout for new side dishes. All too often I jump in with gusto with the entree but by the time it comes to planning and actually cooking the accompaniments, I run out of steam. Seriously, there are only so many times I can serve risotto or scalloped potatoes for dinner. Looking for inspiration, I recently dug through the enormous cookbook collection that I had insisted on bringing with us to Albania (despite it’s pushing us towards the upper limit of our weight allowance I assured Glenn that I would indeed use all of the books). As a member of a cookbook of the month club I have a lot of books that have arrived simply because I forgot to tell them not to send the month’s selection. When this happens I usually scan through the book, mark interesting recipes for future use, and cram it onto a shelf along with previous month’s surprise arrivals. High on this shelf I found Paula Lambert’s Cheese, Glorious Cheese,
a book dedicated to you guessed it, cheese. I had indeed marked several recipes but as far as I could tell, had never tried any of them.
We had British guests coming for a family style dinner and I was looking for something easy to accompany the steaks we were planning on grilling. When I saw the Gouda Bread Pudding recipe I knew it was just the thing. Easy, fast, and tasty. I served it from the table in a large souffle dish but it could just as easily be served in individual dishes for a more elegant presentation. The Gouda was good but I plan on trying out other cheese combinations in the future…..Swiss, cheddar, bleu, pepper jack…….the possibilities are endless.
GOUDA BREAD PUDDING
2 cups milk
1/2 cup creme fraiche or sour cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups shredded sharp, aged Gouda
1) Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl. Add the milk, creme fraiche or sour cream, salt, and
pepper and whisk until well combined.
2) Cut the baguette in half, then cut it into quarters and finally into 1-inch cubes. Add the bread to the
egg mixture and toss to combine. Leave to soak up the liquid at least 10 minutes.
3) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Generously butter an 8-inch to 10-inch casserole or souffle dish.
4) Transfer 1/3 or the soaked bread to the casserole and sprinkle 1/4 of the cheese on top. Repeat
layering the bread and cheese until the casserole is filled. You should have 3 or 4 layers of bread
5) Pour any remaining egg mixture over the bread. Finish by sprinkling the remaining cheese in a
thick layer on top.
6) Transfer to the oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the bread pudding has puffed up in the
center and the top is crusty and golden brown. Serve hot.