Tropical bread pudding

Serves 4-6
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Indy Lifestyle Online

I may get into trouble for saying so but I've never been that impressed with Caribbean desserts. Maybe I've never been lucky with the ones I've tried. I once had something similar to this, but it was more like that bread pudding of ours that you eat with a cup of tea. This version is from The Art of Caribbean Cooking by Yolande Cools-Lartigue, which I bought from the gift shop at Anse Chastanet, where we were staying for a bit of beach time reading. Yup, even on the beach I'm reading cookery books! Her recipe is an interesting combination of bread pudding and bread and butter pudding with all sorts of Caribbean additions. I couldn't wait to get home to try it out for myself.

I may get into trouble for saying so but I've never been that impressed with Caribbean desserts. Maybe I've never been lucky with the ones I've tried. I once had something similar to this, but it was more like that bread pudding of ours that you eat with a cup of tea. This version is from The Art of Caribbean Cooking by Yolande Cools-Lartigue, which I bought from the gift shop at Anse Chastanet, where we were staying for a bit of beach time reading. Yup, even on the beach I'm reading cookery books! Her recipe is an interesting combination of bread pudding and bread and butter pudding with all sorts of Caribbean additions. I couldn't wait to get home to try it out for myself.

6 slices of white bread, crusts removed
2 egg yolks
450ml milk
60g caster sugar
Half a vanilla pod
1 pinch ground nutmeg
Grated zest of half a lime
80g grated fresh coconut or dessicated
12 prunes, stoned and halved
2-3 tbsp apricot or mango jam, melted to glaze
A few shavings of toasted coconut to garnish (optional)

Soak the bread in water for 30 minutes, then squeeze it out. Halve the vanilla pod lengthways and scrape the seeds out with the point of a knife. Add the seeds and pods to the milk with the nutmeg and lime zest and bring to the boil. Meanwhile mix the egg yolks with the sugar in a bowl then pour the boiling milk mixture over them and mix well.

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/Gas mark 5. Scatter the pieces of bread, prunes and coconut into an oven-proof dish and pour over the milk mixture. Bake for 35-40 minutes until the mixture has set.

Brush the top with the jam and scatter the coconut shavings on top.

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