Irish Cream Bread Pudding with Caramel Irish Cream Sauce

Yield: 8 servings

Pudding
1 loaf stale French bread
2 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup Irish cream liqueur
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
3 eggs
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup raisins

Caramel Irish Cream Sauce
1/4 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup freshly brewed coffee
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 cup Irish cream liqueur

Pudding: Crumble the bread, with the crust, into a bowl. Cover with combined milk, cream and liqueur and let stand an hour or until the bread has absorbed most of the liquid.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 13 x 9-inch baking dish and set aside.

Beat eggs, sugar and vanilla extract until well blended. Mix gently with bread and raisins. Spoon into pan, smooth top. Bake until light brown and the custard is set, about an hour.

Caramel Irish Cream Sauce: Pour sugar into water in saucepan and let stand until sugar is wet. Cook, swirling occasionally, until the mixture turns nut brown. Remove from heat. Immediately and CAREFULLY, to avoid splatters, pour in coffee and cream into the saucepan. Return to heat and cook, stirring constantly, until caramel melts. Remove from heat and cool. Stir in lemon juice and liqueur just before serving.

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