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Comforting, custardy Apple Bread Pudding
Apple Bread Pudding with Apple Brandy Sauce
This deliciously comforting Apple Bread Pudding has a custardy middle, layers of soft brandy spiked apples and a crispy top. And, you won’t want to miss adding a drizzle of Apple Brandy Sauce – total apple heaven!
Why does it seem the best recipes are often the most homely? When I look at a well made bread pudding, I often think it looks like a bowl of croutons. How could this bowl of bread have loads of flavor and be a completely satisfying, delicious dessert? I don’t know but it works!
Bread pudding, both sweet and savory, has a long history as the best way to use up stale bread.
Nobody likes to waste food especially when you can make something that tastes this fantastic!
Different types of bread yield different results but the method is often the same. Toast or dry out cubes of bread, then soak them in an egg mixture before baking.
Our bread pudding is made with challah, a traditional Jewish bread with a slightly sweet eggy flavor. A nice loaf of brioche would work well here too. Many bread pudding recipes include raisins or other dried fruits.
But to change things up I layered this bread pudding with diced apples simmered with a little apple brandy.
Have you ever seen bread pudding that look wet and runny and hardly recognizable?
Not this bread pudding! The layers are soft, the top is slightly crunchy and the flavor is out of this world delicious. If you’ve ever wondered if you’d like bread pudding, let this be your first recipe to try.
Served slightly warm, it’s fantastic with ice cream or our Apple Brandy Sauce.
Okay maybe a little extra Apple Brandy Sauce for me.
Our Apple Brandy sauce is not very thick, but it’s absolutely perfect poured over this pudding. The sauce soaks into the bread, and well, you’re going to love it.
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Apple Bread Pudding with apple brandy sauce
- 1 pound Loaf challah cut into 1-inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 Granny Smith apples peeled, cored and diced
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons apple brandy
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 cup brown sugar packed
- 4 cups half and half
- ½ cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons coarse sugar
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- Apple Brandy Sauce or ice cream for serving
- Preheat oven to 300°F. Place the challah cubes on a large rimmed baking sheet and toast until golden and crisp, about 30 minutes stirring halfway through. Set aside. Increase oven temperature to 325°F.
- Grease a 2 quart baking dish (or two smaller casserole dishes) and set aside.
- While the bread is toasting prepare the apple mixture. Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat and add 3 tablespoons of butter. Once melted, add the apples, granulated sugar and 2 tablespoons water. Cook, stirring frequently, until the apples are softened, about 15 minutes. Add the apple brandy and stir until the sauce is syrupy, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat.
- Layer half the toasted bread cubes in the prepared pan. Using a slotted spoon, scoop out half the apples and spread evenly over the bread. Add the remaining bread to the pan, then top with the remaining drained apples. Reserve the apple juice and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl with a spout, whisk together the egg yolks, brown sugar, half & half, milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and salt. Add the reserved apple juice and whisk again to combine.
- Slowly pour the egg mixture over the bread and apples. Gently press down on the bread using the back of a spatula to ensure all pieces are moistened. Allow the mixture to soak for 15-20 minutes. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 45 minutes.
- Remove the foil from the pudding, drizzle with 2 tablespoons melted butter, then sprinkle with 2 tablespoons coarse sugar. Return to the oven and bake, uncovered, for 20 to 25 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and cool on a rack for 30 minutes (or more) before serving. Store leftovers in the refrigerator. Serve with Apple Brandy Sauce or ice cream if desired.
Apple Brandy Sauce
- 1 cup whole milk
- 4 large egg yolks
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons apple brandy like Calvados
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and salt until slightly thickened and lighter in color. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, warm the milk over medium heat just until steaming but not boiling.
- Slowly drizzle/pour half the warm milk into the yolk mixture while whisking continuously. This method of tempering the eggs will keep them from scrambling.
- Pour the now warm yolk mixture back into the saucepan, whisking to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of the spoon. This will only take a few minutes.
- Place a medium mixing bowl over an ice bath (place the medium bowl inside a larger bowl filled with ice). Strain the custard through a fine-mesh sieve set over the bowl. Add the vanilla bean paste and stir to combine. Continue stirring the mixture until it cools. Add the apple brandy and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.
We love baking and cooking with seasonal fruits, and apples are so versatile and delicious.
We have some terrific apple recipes in the SRFD archives like this tasty Irish Apple Crumble Cake also served with a creamy Apple Brandy Sauce.
We love these Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Apple Cider Glaze for a super special breakfast or brunch. Another wonderful dessert is this simple Apple, Cranberry & Currant Crumb Pie – perfect for the holiday season.
Finally, try this Old Fashioned Apple Crisp for an easy and quick dessert the whole family will love.