Ginger Bread and Cream Cheese Bread Pudding

December 27, 2011 8:51:53 AM PST
Chef Ryan of the NoMi Kitchen at the Park Hyatt Chicago is in our kitchen to show us some interesting and creative ways to reuse all those Christmas leftovers.

  • 8 whole eggs
  • 1.5 lb. cream cheese
  • 2c sugar
  • 1qt half and half
  • 1T vanilla extract
  • Pinch salt
  • Leftover croissants, bread or cake scraps*
  • Berries, apples, gingerbread or other fruit (optional)


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F

Warm the cream cheese slightly in the microwave.

Paddle it in a stand mixer with the sugar and salt until creamy.

Slowly add the eggs.

Drizzle in the half and half, mix until all are incorporated, scraping the bowl well. Place the bread scraps in an ovenproof casserole dish (if you are using fruit, add that now as well).

Pour the cream cheese mixture over it until the liquid reaches almost the top of the dish.

Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 20 minutes so the bread can soak up the liquid (can be refrigerated overnight at this point).

Press down with the plastic wrap and top up with more liquid.

Place a rimmed baking sheet in the oven and fill halfway with warm water.

Place the casserole dish in the baking pan -- this will prevent the custard from curdling.

Bake until no liquid comes to the surface when you push down slightly on the bread.

Serve warm. *You can use just about any scrap you have lying around -- we have used croissants, brioche, baguettes, gingerbread, pound cake, chocolate cake, fruit and nut bread, etc. Roughly chop whatever scraps you are using. If you want a bread pudding with more texture, lightly toast the scraps in a 350 degrees F oven first. If you want a softer pudding, don't toast the scraps.

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