I’m not a huge fan of bread unless it’s freshly baked and warm. That’s not always easy to find so when I do have a craving for good bread, I buy it, thoroughly enjoy a slice or two with butter and put the rest away for another day. Unfortunately, fresh baked warm bread left for another day is no longer freshly baked and warm. After a while I end up with partial loaves of bread in my freezer. I really like bread pudding as well. Ironically, I like it best cold and the day after it was made. In any case, partial, left over loaves of fresh bread are perfect for bread pudding! Some bread puddings have spices like cinnamon added all bread puddings need to be soaked in some liquid to soften up the stale, old bread. This is when I thought a chai bread pudding would be amazing. Soaking the stale, old bread in some strongly brewed chai; adding chai spices like cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and ginger to the bread pudding itself to get that chai spice flavour. Below is my attempt at a chai flavoured bread pudding. Note that the amount of “chai spices” added is a personal thing. My goal is to always get the flavour of the tea somewhere in the recipe. The sauce recipe is modified from an existing bread pudding sauce recipe. It is a work in process and will continue to be refined as the desired strength of the chai flavour wasn’t quite there for me. However, there was hint of it. Stay tuned for future versions of the chai bread pudding recipe!
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 5 large beaten eggs
- 2 cups milk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups cubed bread, allow to stale overnight in a bowl
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4c butter, softened
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 teaspoon, or to taste, each of ground cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and ginger*
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ c butter, melted
- 1 egg beaten
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup hot chai
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease am 8”x8” inch pan
- Mix together granulated sugar, eggs, milk in a bowl; add vanilla; 1 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and ginger. Pour over cubed bread and let sit for 10 minutes
- In another bowl, mix and crumble together: brown sugar, butter, walnuts and 1 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and ginger.
- Pour bread mixture into prepared pan. Sprinkle crumble mixture over the top and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until set. Remove from oven.
- Mix together the granulated sugar, butter, egg and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir together until the sugar is melted. Add the chai, stirring well. Pour over bread pudding. Serve warm or cold.
Modifications for future versions:
*These are just my suggestions at spices and quantities to get that chai flavour into the soaked bread. You may want more or less of these spices or even other spices, to get the desired chai flavour.
** The sauce recipe is modified from an existing bread pudding sauce recipe. It is a work in process and will continue to be refined as the desired strength of the chai flavour wasn’t quite there for me. However, there was hint of it.
Alternate tea choices: While chai seems like a natural choice for bread pudding, Chocolate Chaga cake would also be great for a chocolate inspired bread pudding! In this case, instead of the spices cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and clove, I would add in some cocoa powder, maybe a little spice such as allspice, cinnamon or nutmeg. For those that enjoy a Mexican hot chocolate, I’d add in a little chili pepper flakes too! I may also lessen the sugar and use more coco powder or even a chocolate milk instead of a white milk in the recipe.
Note: I’m no cook, chef or baker so everything I make is based on the enjoyment of creating something new, cooking, baking and especially tea! I hope you enjoy the recipes, both making them and the tasting the results!