Thursday, October 17, 2013

Caramel Apple Bread Pudding - Church PotLuck Dessert

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It's apple season again!  Just about every store has bags for sale at 1/3rd of the price charged just a couple months ago.  But even without the sale, this is a gem of a recipe.

A traditional southern sweet bread pudding gets an APPLE PIE update, and then drizzle of caramel sauce becomes an adult version of the kids Halloween treat, the CARAMEL APPLE.

Bread puddings appear and sound complicated until you do your first one.  They were originally simply a way to create something from nothing... Something special from bread that had become stale and useless.  the key to a bread pudding is that stale bread.  The more stale actually the better.  Stale bread has no moisture, allowing it to absorb the liquid eggy custard mix more completely.  When the whole thing cooks you end up with a cakey custard mix that is the stuff of legend.

This really is easy, with only about 15 minutes of hands on work.  The dessert travels well.  It is best when served warm but can also be served room temperature.  Of course best when served with real fresh made whipped cream... but cool whip can work in a pinch.

Just as delicious as it sounds!

OK... Here's what I did...

Caramel Apple
Bread Pudding

  • 1 Cup Chunky Applesauce
  • 1 Cup Half and Half
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 6 Large Eggs, Whipped
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Nutmeg
  • 6 Cups Cubed day old Bread (cut into 1 inch square cubes the night before so the bread dries out.  Alternatively, spread cubes on a cookie sheet and toast in 100 degree oven for 20 minutes)
  • 2 Medium Apples (I used Gala), peeled and sliced
  • Large Drizzle Caramel Ice Cream topping
  • Whipped Cream for topping
Cooking Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, combine the applesauce, 1/2 and 1/2, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla and spices. 
  3. In a 9X9 sprayed pan, add bread cubes.  pour liquid over the cubes and gently mix with your hands.  DO NOT OVER MIX but be sure everything is well coated. 
  4. Insert apple slices into the pudding, a slice every square inch
  5. Let stand for 15 minutes or until bread is softened and mix is soupy.
  6. Bake, uncovered, at 325° for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. 
  7. When the pudding is fresh out of the oven, drizzle caramel sauce throughout the top.  Allow this to rest for 10 minutes before serving.
  8. Serve warm with whipped cream and ENJOY!!!


This simple recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Cakes and Pies at Home"!

These are the desserts you make for your family.  No fancy amazing wedding cakes, just the rustic beauty of the classics.  From pumpkin pie to cheesecakes to layer cakes, these are what your family craves for dessert.  You may even see a few unusual crusts and frosting ideas to try.

You get the idea. These recipes are simple, delicious and will have your family wanting dessert first...


This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy


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