Friday, October 15, 2010

Grand Marnier Bread Pudding

Today is the day. is launching at 3 pm ET. My favorite food writer, Colman Andrews, is at the helm of this mega-food web site as the editor-in-chief. I have reason to believe that this venture may even be better than one of his other start-ups, Saveur Magazine. I am honored that he asked me to be a contributor on the gluten-free front. He gave me my first recipe assignment for The Daily Meal: gluten-free bread pudding. Recipe development had to be completed within two days. Efficiency was critical for making sure I had the best recipe possible. My first strategy was to keep in mind the autumn season is upon us, and the flavors had to embrace comfort, warmth. Then to figure out what store-bought GF bread works the best for this. Most importantly, I had to determine where to test my prototypes. Easy, my husband's office. All of his coworkers never ask if it's GF, they are always game for whatever I bring in and happily provide feedback. My kind of crowd. I felt like I had shut down his office for the 30 minute expert panel tasting. All of them were winners, but the favorite was the Grand Marnier. The prettiest of the bunch, too.

This bread pudding has a simple, bright, orange flavor. Crunchy bread on top, with a delicate custard towards the bottom. Works equally as well for either a dessert or a decadent brunch treat. Udi’s sandwich bread works very well for this recipe, either the white or whole grain varities. Available nationwide: Of course, it can be made with regular (gluten-filled) bread, too. I prefer to weigh ingredients when I bake, I find it easier & more fail-safe. Makes about 12 servings.





8 slices / 200 g

Udi’s gluten-free bread

Leave crusts on

1 1/3 cup / 300 g

Heavy Cream

1 1/3 cup / 300 g


½ cup / 90 g


4 large


room temperature

½ cup / 60 g

Grand Marnier

from 1 orange

Orange Zest

from 1 orange

Orange Juice

seeds removed

1 teaspoon

Vanilla Extract

¼ teaspoon



Knife, Zester/Grater, & Cutting board

Whisk, Cooking Spoon, Ladle

Measuring Cups, Spoons; Scale (if prefered)

Medium Sauce pan, Large mixing bowl

Muffin Tin or 8”X8” pan or Casserole Dish


1. Cut the bread into ½ inch cubes (with the crusts on). Toast at 325oF spread out in an even layer on cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Toast for 5 minutes, just until it has dried out & is just a hint of gold on the edges.
2. Combine the cream + milk + sugar in a heavy saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved and foams forms on top.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs.
4. Slowly add in the hot cream + milk + sugar as a slow stream into the eggs constantly stirring to gently temper the eggs.
5. Whisk in, one at a time, the Grand Marnier + zest + orange juice + vanilla extract + salt.
6. Using either a sprayed or buttered 12-muffin tin, an 8 inch x 8 inch baking pan, or a casserole dish, evenly distribute the bread cubes.
7. Evenly pour or ladle the custard into the pan. Push any bread that is not covered to absorb the custard.
8. Let stand, refrigerated, for 1 hour or longer, so the bread absorbs the custard mixture. If necessary, push the bread down into the pan once or twice after the mixture has had time to stand.
9. Bake at 350°F (175°C) until set and golden brown on top, about 30 minutes for the muffins and about 45 minutes for a single pan. Use a toothpick to test for done-ness: if it comes out clean, it’s done.
10. Allow to rest until cool enough to handle before serving or cutting.

-Erin Swing
The Sensitive Epicure