This was the plan: Cook dessert for Nancy's Palm Sunday dinner. For some time we've both wondered about a recipe for Krispy Kreme Bread pudding that I spotted last year in Food & Wine. Yes, it's a doughnut bread pudding, but not the Paula Deen version. Her version contains fruit cocktail, and is rather famous. As a child, I once watched another kid vomit up a large quantity of Libby's Fruit Cocktail. The sight was seared into my brain and I've never been able to eat that stuff again. This Food & Wine recipe contains no fruit cocktail, just tons of cream and eggs. As if the bread pudding wasn't already decadent, a sauce of lightly wipped cream mixed with expresso is poured over each serving. Insanity prevailed and I decided to make it. It seemed like a fun thing to do. What follows is clearly the efforts of the Food Rehab part of my brain doing it's best to completely sabatoge my efforts at making this dish. And it worked. It was a disaster.
Things started out rather well. I cut up 18 glazed doughnuts, and baked them until they reminded me of doughnut croutons. I wonder why some snack purveyor hasn't come up with the idea--they were quite tasty. I put them into a large bowl containing a mixture of cream, milk, 10 egg yolks, 2 whole eggs, and a bit of condensed milk. So far, everything was very easy and my only concern was whether I'd be able to fit the doughnut mixture into my baking pan.
Now, here is where it all went horribly awry. The pudding baked up nice and brown, with a crispy crust. I was quite pleased until I tried to lift the pan out of the roaster. The hot water burned my fingers, making me drop one end of the pan. That caused a wave effect, with the water in the roaster splashing onto my lovely bread pudding, forming a little lake on top of it.
After dropping a few choice curses, I remembered the words of Julia Child after she dropped a plate of food face down on the floor. Scooping the food up, she rearranged it on the serving dish and advised viewers to press on and not mention such accidents to guests. What they didn't know wouldn't hurt them. So, I poured the water off the pudding and put it back in the oven, hoping the heat would help dry up the moisture. Then I ran off to finish dressing for the party. When I came back to look at my pudding, strange noises were coming from the oven, along with puffs of smoke. And there you have it. My burned Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding. Later Bob and I scraped the burned part off and tasted a small piece of it. It tasted like.......doughnuts. But, in a bread pudding way. Then I threw the rest of it into in the garbage.
As God is my witness, I'll never make this again.
Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding, With Expresso Whipped Cream
(Food & Wine magazine)
1 1/2 dozen glazed doughnuts, cut into sixths
1 quart heavy cream
2 cups milk
10 large egg yolks
2 large whole eggs
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup brewed espresso, chilled
Preheat the oven to 250°. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Spread the doughnut pieces on baking sheets and bake for about 30 minutes, until dry on the outside and semifirm in the center. Raise the oven temperature to 350°.
In a large bowl, whisk 2 cups of the cream with the milk, egg yolks, whole eggs and condensed milk. Add the doughnut pieces and let soak until the pieces are softened, about 1 hour; stir every 15 minutes.
Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Spoon the doughnut mixture into the prepared baking dish and cover with foil. Set the dish in a roasting pan and add enough water to the pan to reach halfway up the side of the baking dish. Bake the bread pudding for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for about 20 minutes longer, or until the bread pudding is set.
Preheat the broiler. Broil the bread pudding for about 3 minutes, or until top is lightly browned. Let cool for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whip the remaining 2 cups of cream to semisoft peaks. Stir in the espresso. Serve with the warm bread pudding.