When it comes to food there are only two things I really don’t care for. They are white sauce on pasta and salsa on eggs. In my opinion those combinations were never meant to be. Anything else is fair game.
It’s quite possible the Palace Cafes’ White Chocolate Bread Pudding is the most delightful and delectable experience my taste buds have ever had. We fell in love with it when we were in New Orleans in March. Sometimes I think I still taste it. I so love bread pudding!
We had a small town fine dining encounter last weekend. The server at the next table talked to her guests about the wonderful bread pudding their chef had made a couple nights prior – only for that night.
My ears perked up and I spoke up.
“Are there any leftovers?” I had to ask.
“There might be,” the server replied. “I’ll check.”
She returned. “I’m sorry,” she said. “None left.”
Ever since then I haven’t been able to get bread pudding off my mind.
My friend, Laurel, brought home a cookbook from New Orleans titled, “New Orleans Classic Desserts,” (Recipes from Favorite Restaurants) by Kit Wohl. Inside is the Palace Café’s recipe for its White Chocolate Bread Pudding.
Mother’s Day weekend might be just the time for you to make this for your mom. I can’t imagine anyone not liking it.
In the book Wohl writes: “The Palace Cafes’ version features white chocolate with tongue-in-cheek brown chocolate sprinkles. White chocolate is an ivory confection made from cocoa butter without the cocoa solids. It also includes flavoring such as vanilla. It is not considered chocolate, since it does not include cocoa, but it tastes similar to milk chocolate.”
Having this bread pudding at the Palace Café was what you’d call “icing on the cake.” The Palace is a very upbeat, lively and grand place. Located on historic Canal Street it is housed in the Werlein building, former home of the Werlein’s, the nation’s oldest family owned retail music chain. This building has been a New Orleans landmark since the turn of the century. And now, within its walls, it serves supposedly the nation’s very best bread pudding – white chocolate to-boot.
Why not give it a try:
PALACE CAFÉ’S WHITE CHOCOLATE BREAD PUDDING – SERVES 8
- 5 cups French bread, sliced into ¼ inch pieces
- 3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
- 3 cups whipping cream
- 10 ounces white chocolate
- 1 cup whole milk
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 8 large egg yolks
- 2 large eggs
Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.
Bake the French bread in the oven 15 minutes to dry it. Remove from oven. Set aside.
Pour butter into a 9×13-inch baking pan. Heat the three cups of whipping cream in a double boiler and add 10 ounces of crumbled white chocolate. When the chocolate is melted, remove from heat.
In another double boiler, heat the milk, sugar, eggs and egg yolks until warm. Gradually add the egg mixture stirring quickly as it is poured, into the cream and chocolate mixture.
Place the bread pieces into a greased baking pan. Pour ½ of the mixture over the bread and let settle until the bread soaks up all the liquid. Pour the remaining mixture over the top. Cover with aluminum foil and bake 1 hour. Prepare the white chocolate sauce while the bread is baking.
Remove the foil from the bread pudding after 1 hour and bake approximately 15 minutes more until the top is golden brown. Cool to room temperature. To serve, cut into 3-inch squares and place on individual serving dishes.
Warm the white chocolate sauce. Spoon over baked, warm bread pudding and garnish with white chocolate curls or brown chocolate crumbles. To make chocolate crumbles rub a piece of hard chocolate over a small cheese grater. To make the chocolate curls, soften the chocolate slightly and use a potato peeler to run down the edge of the bar.
WHITE CHOCOLATE SAUCE
- 8 ounces white chocolate
- 3 ounces heavy whipping cream
- 1 ounce semi-sweet chocolate
In the top of a double boiler over hot water, melt the white chocolate. Remove from heat and mix in heavy whipping cream.
After ladling the sauce over the bread pudding, garnish with chocolate curls or crumbles.