Leek and Artichoke Bread Pudding

Leek and Artichoke Bread Pudding is rated 2.7 out of 5 by 3.
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Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 100 minutes
Servings: 8

Instead of stuffing, Ina Garten makes a savory bread pudding that is moist inside and crispy on top. She says that if you try this, you’ll never go back to stuffing a turkey again!

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups (1-inch-/2.5-cm-diced) day-old bakery white bread, crusts removed
  • 3 ounces (90 g) thinly sliced pancetta
  • 6 cups (1/2-inch-/12-mm-diced) leeks, white and light green parts (5 leeks)
  • 3 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (9-ounce/280-g) package frozen artichoke hearts, defrosted
  • 3 Tbs. minced fresh chives
  • 2 tsp. minced fresh tarragon leaves
  • 4 extra-large eggs
  • 2 cups (16 fl. oz./500 ml) heavy cream
  • 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) good chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 2 cups (8 oz./250 g) grated Emmentaler Swiss cheese

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).

Place the bread cubes on a sheet pan and bake for 15 minutes, tossing once, until lightly browned. Place the pancetta in one layer on another sheet pan and bake in the same oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Place the pancetta on a plate lined with paper towels and set aside.

Meanwhile, soak the leeks in water until they’re clean, and spin them dry in a salad spinner. Heat the butter in an 11-inch (28-cm) pot over medium heat, add the leeks and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the wine, 1 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. pepper and cook for 5 minutes, until the wine almost evaporates and the leeks are tender. Off the heat, mix in the artichokes, toasted bread cubes, chives and tarragon.

Whisk the eggs, cream, chicken stock, nutmeg and 1 tsp. salt together in a large bowl. Spoon half of the bread mixture into a 13 x 9 x 2-inch (33 x 23 x 5-cm) baking dish. Sprinkle with half the Emmentaler and add the remaining bread mixture. Pour on the cream mixture, sprinkle with the remaining Emmentaler and press lightly to help the bread absorb the liquid. Dice or crumble the pancetta, scatter on top and sprinkle lightly with pepper. Set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes to allow the bread to absorb the cream mixture. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the custard is set and the bread pudding is puffed and golden. Serve hot. Serves 8.

Make It Ahead: Assemble the bread pudding and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Bake before serving.

Recipe from Ina Garten, Make It Ahead (Clarkson Potter, 2014)

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyed by all! Since we were having a non-traditional Thanksgiving this year, this recipe sounded like a good accompaniment for the small roast chicken with roasted garlic/red wine sauce I was serving for the three of us. I opted to halve the recipe and I used large eggs rather than jumbo, but I've had excellent experiences with Ina Garten's recipes previously and was confident she wouldn't lead me astray. She didn't. I'd actually gotten this recipe from her cookbook which is all about recipes you can make in advance. For me, this recipe worked beautifully. I prepped all the way up to baking two days before serving, and pulled it out of the fridge about 90 minutes before I intended to bake. (I think I also may have baked it longer than required-- not because it needed it, rather because I was preoccupied with the rest of my meal. I can't say that the extra time caused any ill effects.) For the record also, I sliced the leeks rather than chopping (probably about 1/4 inch thick) and opted to chop my artichoke hearts a bit, as they struck me as too large. I wasn't terribly meticulous insofar as crust removal went on the LaBrea Bakery white bread I used, and some of the pieces still contained softer crust. Again, I found the recipe forgiving, and we were all pleased with the results. I would have no qualms about serving this again and considered the recipe a keeper.
Date published: 2018-11-23
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Disappointing The recipe sounded wonderful and I tried it out to see if I should make it for Christmas. It was quite a bit of work and at the end it turned out just barely ok, but mostly tasteless. I don't feel that it's worth the effort. I can think of a variety of side dishes that are far tastier and much more satisfying that this one.
Date published: 2014-12-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from For bread pudding lovers I made this for Thanksgiving and got mixed reviews. My daughter loved it, husband did not care for it, and I thought it was OK. It seemed a bit soggy in the middle even though I baked it for five minutes extra in a correctly calibrated gas oven. I followed the instructions exactly and prepped it 12 hours ahead of baking, but if I make it again I will reduce the fluid by half a cup. I would not recommend it to replace stuffing although it was an interesting vegetarian dish.
Date published: 2014-11-30
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