This time around I selected my menu with various hors d’oeuvres type food in mind that I brought out gradually, some of which I was able to make ahead and it was a splendidly relaxed and successful evening. I went for a vaguely tropical theme and served: Spicy Margarita Raisins that called for raisins to be slowly cooked in a mixture of butter, crushed red pepper flakes, tequila, triple sec, lime juice and then coated in coarse salt. They were pretty amazing. I also served Rick Bayless’ Salsa Baked Goat Cheese, Norman Van Aken’s Black Bean and Tropical Fruit Salsa, Seared Shrimp with Lime Jalapeno Dipping Sauce, Sesame Garlic Edamame and for dessert, these Mango Bread Puddings.
These puddings were a great end to this sort of an evening because the individual portions aren’t overly large, they can be prepped ahead of time with minimal effort and the mango is an unusual but welcome fruit in this sort of dish. I can see upping the ginger factor by tossing in some minced candied ginger. And, this recipe can certainly be made in one large dish, just allow for a longer cooking time. You’ll know it’s ready when the bread is puffed and golden.
- 5 cups Challah bread torn into 1 inch cubes
- 2 large, ripe mangoes, peeled and diced
- Unsalted butter, softened, for greasing ramekins
- 2 cups whole milk
- 3 eggs
- 4 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon demerara sugar
- 1 cup whipped cream
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place 8 1-cup ramekins on a baking sheet. Lightly coat the inside of each one with the butter. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the bread cubes and mangoes. Toss with your hands until evenly combined. Divide the mixture amongst the ramekins.
In another bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs brown sugar, vanilla and ginger. Carefully pour the milk mixture over each ramekin. Sprinkle the demerara sugar over each pudding. Place in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until puffed and golden.
Remove from the oven, let cool for 5-10 minutes, and then dollop with the cold whipped cream and serve.
*The puddings can be assembled several hours ahead. Refrigerate the bread mixture and milk mixture separately and combine just before baking.