Sunday, 3 February 2013

Chocolate Orange Brioche and Butter Pudding

I have so often seen recipes for chocolate bread and butter pudding using either plain white bread or brioche.  I've also seen orange flavours added with marmalade or other similar flavours - with apricot jam sometimes.  But I couldn't find a recipe that used orange flavoured chocolate to give the scent of orange but without that kick in the head citrus hit.

So I've made one up!  Hurrah!

For when you want something stodgy, something sweet, if you've got a craving for milk, if you need to mend a broken heart, if you're missing your mums cooking or if you're just feeling a little bit naughty!  Hopeful this pudding will sort it out and, if it doesn't, it will hopefully soften the bumps.

Along with a few other recipes, I'm going to start campaigning for this pudding to be a certified method for the treatment of depression!

50g Butter - for greasing
400g plain brioche, sliced
100g milk chocolate - orange flavour if available
750ml Gold Top Milk (5% Fat)
Zest of 2 large oranges
3 medium eggs
5 medium egg yolks
50g golden caster sugar, plus a little extra for sprinkling

Most bread and butter recipes suggest using stale bread or brioche, which you can do, but it's not essential.
If you can't get hold of Gold Top, split the milk quantity evenly between full-fat (3-4%) and double cream.  And you can always use the left over egg whites to make little meringue bites - lovely with a cup of coffee.

Grease the base and sides of a 2 litre oven-proof ceramic dish.
If it is not already sliced, slice the the Brioche into 1cm thick slices, or an even thickness if you'd like them to be thicker.  Cut the chocolate into little pieces.

Arrange the Brioche in the dish, sprinkling half of the chocolate pieces between the slices as you do so.
Once the bread is arranged, sprinkle half of the remaining chocolate pieces over the bread.


In a saucepan, gently warm the milk and orange zest until approaching a boil.  Remove from the heat.
In an electric mixer, if you have one, whisk together the eggs and sugar on a medium-high speed until pale, thick and doubled in size - this should take about 5 minutes in good electric mixer - you want soft peaks.  On a slower setting, slowly pour the warm milk and zest into the egg mixture and mix for a further 2-3 minutes on a slow speed to make the custard.

Pour the thick, glorious custard over the arranged bread and leave to stand for 15 minutes until the bread has soaked up all that it can.  You may find that the mixture is a little fluffy or foamy - like the top of a decadent cappuccino - that's ok. In this 15 minute rest, light the oven and pre-heat to gas mark 3.

Sprinkle the top of the pudding with a little golden caster sugar or demerara and place in the oven for 45 minutes.  When baked, the crusts of the bread should be golden and crispy and the centre of the bread should have a soft, spongey consistency.

Serve, with a big fat smile to warm hearts and raise spirits xx


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