Poppy Seed Bread Pudding with Slivered Almonds and Vanilla Bean Syrup

I just now finished my fiance's valentine's day gift. Now that I think about it, its 12:50 am so it is valentine's day. I procrastinated a little to much on that one.... Since I'm pretty sure he won't read this until after he receives his gift i'll just let you all know what it is. Home made almond joy candies. And this amazing recipe belongs to none other than Joy the Baker. Now, if you are not familiar with joy the baker, I suggest you google her right now. Every cook and lover of sweet confections needs Joy the baker in their life. But, hold your horses, finish my blog post first and then venture off to discover the sweet wonders of Joy the Baker.

Ok. So, before I started on the almond joys tonight, or yesterday, or whatever (I should be in bed), I used the leftover poppy seed cake I had from making the poppy seed trifle with strawberries and orange crème fraiche. For what you ask? Well, since I was lazy, bread pudding. There are few truly easy to make deserts in this world as scrumptious and satisfying as bread pudding. And since I was using poppyseed cake, it was flavor packed. Topping it off with some slivered almonds and a simple vanilla syrup did the trick. Now that I think about it this would be great served for brunch too.... anyway i'm going to start rambling from sleep deprivation so here's the recipe. Enjoy.

 

Poppy Seed Bread Pudding with Slivered Almonds and Vanilla Bean Syrup

 

Bread Pudding:

 

1 ½ lb poppy seed bread or cake, cut into 1 inch cubes

 

8 large eggs

 

2 c heavy whipping cream

 

2 c milk

 

1 c sugar

 

 1/4-1/2 c slivered almonds

 

butter

 

Mix eggs, cream, milk, and sugar. Set aside. Butter a 9 x 13 pan and evenly layer your cake/bread. Pour the custard mixture over the top and let soak for 30 min. 10 min before soaking is done, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Once the cake/bread has soaked, top with the slivered almonds and place in the oven and bake for 1 hour or until the top is golden with browned bits and the center is set. Serve warm with vanilla bean syrup and fresh whipped cream.

 

Vanilla Bean Syrup

 

1 c water

 

1 c sugar

 

3 Tbs whipping cream

 

seeds of 1 vanilla bean seed

 

In a medium pan, bring water and sugar to a boil on high. Allow to boil until the sugar liquid is reduced to about 1 cup, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Immediately add the cream and vanilla bean seeds. Mix well. Keep warm to serve or allow to cool and store in fridge. Reheat by microwaving in 20 second intervals while stirring in between until warm.

 

TIP: if you over boil the sugar liquid to hard ball stage and it starts to harden, QUICKLY apply a 1-2 tablespoons of EXTREMELY hot water and stir vigorously. This should save your syrup.  

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