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Roasted Fennel Bread Pudding with Yellow-Pepper Coulis


First Posted: 10/27/2011 4:55 pm Updated: 08/31/2012 10:48 am

Roasted Fennel Bread Pudding with Yellow-Pepper Coulis

Roasted Fennel Bread Pudding with Yellow-Pepper Coulis
New Media Publishing / Photography: Flat Art Studios.com / Stylist: Abigail Donnelly
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total prep
Skip the stuffing and serve this rich, savory bread pudding instead. Each person at the table gets their own individual portion, paired with a delicate yellow coulis.

Ingredients

  • FOR COULIS:
  • 6 yellow bell peppers
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • FOR THE BREAD PUDDING:
  • 3 pounds fennel bulb (anise), tops removed and cut into 1-inch pieces, greens reserved
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon herbs de Provence
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 cups (1/2-inch cubes) brioche or challah bread (from one loaf)
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmegiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Gruyere
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
  • Special equipment: 12 (6-ounce) ramekins, parchment paper

Directions

  • TO MAKE COULIS:
    Lay peppers on their sides on the stovetop burner grates and turn flames on high. Char peppers, turning them with tongs, until the skins are blackened on all sides, about 10 minutes.
  • Transfer peppers to a bowl, cover and let them stand until they are cool enough to handle, 20 minutes. Peel peppers, then pull out the stems and remove and discard the seeds and ribs.
  • Blend peppers, oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper in a blender until smooth. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and reserve.
  • TO MAKE BREAD PUDDING:
    Put rack in middle position and preheat oven to 400F.
  • Toss fennel, 4 tablespoons oil, herbs de Provence, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until fennel is well-coated. Transfer fennel to a large shallow baking sheet with sides, and roast, stirring once or twice, until tender and deep golden, about 25 minutes. Reserve fennel and reduce oven temperature to 350F.
  • Bake bread cubes in 1 layer in a large shallow baking pan until golden brown, about 6 minutes.
  • Cook shallots and garlic in remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Reserve.
  • Whisk together milk, heavy cream, eggs, Parmigiano-Reggiano and Gruyere in a large bowl. Stir in roasted fennel, reserved shallot mixture, parsley, and bread cubes until well mixed. Let stand about 10 minutes for bread to absorb some of egg mixture.
  • While bread is soaking, butter ramekins, then put a round of parchment in bottom of ramekin and butter parchment. Spoon mixture into ramekins, then place ramekins on a baking sheet and bake until lightly golden on top and firm to the touch, 30 minutes.
  • To serve, run a knife around outer edge of puddings, unmold and discard parchment. Sprinkle with fennel greens, and serve with coulis.
  • Make ahead: Bread puddings can be made 1 day ahead. To reheat, unmold on to a foil-lined baking tray, cover with foil and heat in a 350F oven for 30 minutes.

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