Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Brioche & Bourbon Bread Pudding Cupffin

Cupcake or muffin? No matter so long as it's delicious right?

Figured I'd kick off this blog with a namesake recipe to showcase 2 very different ingredients and how they come together to make something so delectable that even I, the anti-sweet girl, am tempted. I find this recipe works best when you have a Tupperware container handy to pack them in as soon as they're out of the oven, for grateful friends or co-workers to enjoy instead of my hips.
I tend to go a little crazy with the bourbon. I have a friend that does work with Jack Daniels (technically not a Bourbon but Tennessee is close enough) and he's always mentioning lovely bourbon tips and tricks. Did you know that September is Jack Daniels Month? That bourbon is the official drink of the United States, by act of Congress? Or that bourbon can be substituted for vanilla in any recipe (though you probably don't want to do it the other way around)? This last bit of trivia I tend to take to heart when it comes to cooking (baking of course can be trickier but for this recipe it's not about exact measurements).

This bread pudding could easily be made in a traditional bread pan, I just like the cupcakes since it also represents a marriage of North and South. Southern bread pudding made into a trendy Northeast cupcake. And that's really what this blog is all about, bringing things together, finding balance, not being afraid to embrace the new but never ever leaving your roots behind. So here goes.

Brioche & Bourbon Bread Pudding Cupffins
Makes 12-16
3 c. Brioche cubed
3 large eggs
2/3 c. sugar
3/4 c. milk
1/2 c. light cream
1 Tbl. bourbon
1/2 Tbl. vanilla
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
3 Tbl. raisins (soaked in bourbon-optional)
2 Tbl. chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350. Soak raisins in bourbon. Place cupcake liners in pan and place cubed brioche in until 3/4 full- you may need to press down a bit to make sure it's packed in evenly.

2. Mix all the other ingredients in bowl until well combined. Drain raisins and add to the mixture. Fill in cupcake tins until bread is soaked though- do not fill to the top though. Top with chopped pecans. Bake for 25-30 minutes- test doneness by inserting a knife, if it comes out clean then done.

The cupcake part is made with the Bourbon Sauce, which is optional but delicious.

Bourbon Sauce

1/2 c. sugar
3 Tbl. butter
1/2 Tbl. light corn syrup
1/4 c. light cream
1 Tbl. bourbon
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. baking soda

1. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan at medium high heat. Let boil for 1 minute- will foam up a bit. Pour over bread puddings and serve warm.

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