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Rum-Raisin Bread Pudding

Rum-Raisin Bread Pudding
Raisins plumped in rum contribute the signature flavor to this custardy pudding. If you like, sprinkle each serving with granulated or confectioners' sugar.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup rum or brandy
  • 4 cups day-old bread cubes
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. lemon extract
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tart apple, cored and cubed

Directions:

In a small bowl, combine the raisins and rum and let stand for 30 minutes.

While the raisins are soaking, preheat an oven to 325°F. Butter an 8-inch square baking dish or 4 to 6 custard cups.

Spread the bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat together the sugar, butter, eggs, milk, vanilla and lemon extracts, and cinnamon until well blended. Stir in the bread cubes, apple, and raisins and rum. Let stand until the bread cubes soak up most of the liquid, about 5 minutes. Stir again and pour into the baking dish or divide among the custard cups.

Bake until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes for custard cups, 50 to 60 minutes for the baking dish. Remove from the oven and serve hot or at room temperature.
Serves 4 to 6.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Lifestyles Series, Chicken for Dinner, by Heidi Haughy Cusick (Time-Life Books, 1998).