I was way from this blog since last 3 years. Fortunately, i started writing stories on one blog & Book reviews on another. And Although i wanted to publish many many posts on this blog, the ideas and thoughts were all conceived in mind and evaporated too.
I still kept on reading & blog hopping through beautiful food and gastronomical websites. They were & are still a respite to sore eyes and tired soul.
A lot happened during these 3 years. I lost track of time, gained weight, pondered over things & incidents which were not in my hand. I learnt to let go, learnt to keep people who were closer to me during these tough times. Learnt to love, learnt to forget & forgive, still learning to love myself and trying to get through something called life.
I am still learning to battle through disappointments, trying to understand and cope with the failure. Trying to deal with zillion emotions & be at peace. I am at a crossroads in life, where i really don’t know what should i do. I can’t decide the priority, I don’t know which way of life will lead me to a better way of living.
Honestly, i am lost, as cliched as it may sound i am buried beneath the sands of time. It almost seems as if have crossed all timelines only to know that i am late, terribly late.
Now, i am scared, uncertain of the future, nothing seems to be concrete, the mind has become like a quicksand of emotions. I am still finding a branch of hope to cling on to.
The only oasis in all this black & white life is food, of course. The whole gastronomy behind it, cooking, chefs, cook books, baking books, blogs are nothing short than a soothing therapy for me. I have definitely cooked and baked less in this period. But i have never stopped reading, surfing blogs and of course reading books.
I have amassed a mini collection of cook books and baking books. All these books are close to my heart & someday i will cook through them all.
For now, let us walk through bread pudding recipe.
Who hasn’t heard of Bread Pudding ? It was prime dessert of British Era and featured constantly on the menu of Iranian Restaurants. Unfortunately I was not born during British era and i have never been to an Iranian Restaurant.
I have only had its eggy cousin, flan at a friend’s place during Eid. I was talking to mom yesterday, while making this pudding & she reminisced time spent with her dad on an occasion, where she had bread pudding.
As for me, i had to create my own memory of having bread pudding. Bread Pudding is itself a warm, homely word & somehow it evokes vision of sitting in a cozy place, with a book on lap & a bowl of bread pudding drizzled with Caramel sauce or sweetened cream. It definitely sounds so English.
So yesterday, when i had brought a bit of extra bread to give shape to my ideas which as usually don’t materialize, i had this brainstorm to make some bread pudding.
I typed into trusted google search bar- eggless bread pudding & there popped in thousand results. I zeroed on Rakskitchen.net‘s bread pudding recipe, because it was so simple and looked elegant.
I altered the recipe a bit & realized in the process that some of the dishes are meant to be simple not to be touched & tinkered with. Sometimes simplicity is a harder task to accomplish.
Adapted from Rak’s kitchen
Note :- You can completely adapt Rak’s Kitchen recipe or you can tweak a little bit like i did. Following recipe’s ingredients are altered as per my taste & imagination (which failed me a bit)
Cuisine :- British/Fusion Cuisine
Serves :- 3
Accompanied with :- Scoop of vanilla ice cream, sweetened cream or caramel sauce.
Half a baguette (6 inch) or 4 to 5 white bread slices
1 cup milk
1 small pinch of saffron
2 tablespoon of roasted cashew nuts
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
For caramelisation of fresh fruits :-
1 medium size banana -chopped into pieces
2 figs- chopped
1 pear- chopped
2 tablespoon brown sugar
To prepare salty caramel sauce :-
(this i where i went wrong, caramelizing sugar is science and science is my Achilles heel. Please follow the caramel recipe as given in Raks Kitchen or for extra oomph follow salty caramel sauce-Gemma’s Bigger bolder baking)
- Tear up the baguette into bite size pieces or if you are using bread slices, chop off the brown border and then cut the slices into bite sized pieces.
- Pour 1 cup of milk in the bite sized bread pieces and let it soak for some time.
- After 10 to 15 minutes of soaking the bread, put sugar, saffron, vanilla essence and mix it well. You can adjust the amount of sugar as per your taste. I like it on the less sweet side.
For Caramelization of fruits :–
- Take a thick bottomed, non-stick pan on a medium flame. Put brown sugar and let it melt a little bit.
- Put all the chopped fruits and gently let them cook & simmer till they are soft and tender.
- Switch off the flame and keep the pan aside.
For caramel sugar or salty caramel sauce – follow the recipes given below in the link :-
For Final assemble :-
- Take a pressure cooker & remove lid’s valve/regulator. Put the cooker on a medium flame and fill it up with water till it covers 1/2 of the cooker.
- Take an 8 inch round pan and lightly grease it with butter.
- Pour the salty caramel sauce/caramel and let it cover the whole pan.
- Let the sauce/caramel set in the pan. Once it sets in the pan, cover with half of Bread pudding mixture.
- Then cover the layer with caramelized fruits and finally top it with up remaining bread pudding mixture.
- Cover the bread pudding pan with aluminium foil & poke it little bit to let the steam out.
- Cover the pressure cooker with its lid and let it steam for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Check after 15 to 20 minutes, remove the tin foil & insert a knife or a tooth pick in the pudding, if the tooth pick or knife comes out clean, then the pudding is done.
- Let the pudding cool down to room temperature and let it cool in the fridge for minimum 2 hours.
- After it is properly chilled, invert the pudding into a plate. Cut into desired piece and serve it with Caramel sauce or vanilla ice cream.
- I used mangoes in the pudding, don’t do that. It spoils the taste of the pudding. Perhaps a swirl of mango pudding would work fine but not fresh pieces.
- I used an 8 inch round aluminium pan. I think a smaller one would work just fine or perhaps mini bundt pan.
- Next time I would try and use raisins, black currant, roasted almond and roasted walnut.
- Simplicity is the key to success for this dish.
PS- It feels good to be back. A virtual home away from home. Food is nearer and dearer to all of us. For some of us, its a mere way of revitalizing us. For others its a gastronomical experience,every grain, every fibre, every slice and every drop says a story. For whichever song it sings for us, good food will always be a vital part of our lives.
I’ll try to be more regular in blogging & make something of my life where its worthwhile living. Till we meet again, happy living & eating : )
Thank you for reading.