Sunday, November 27, 2011

Marrying Deserts

Does anyone else do this?  Marry recipes?  You know, take a bit from this and a bit from that and come up with something new?  I do it all the time and this recipe was a molten home run.  It was wonderfully frugal, too!  Bread Pudding is a classic frugal trick.  A great way to use up old bread. I have found many versions of bread pudding in frugal cookbooks and in one cookbook recalling recipes of the Great Depression.  The Italians use dried bread to create wonderful salads, too. 

My twist is Chocolate Pumpkin Cinnamon Roll Pudding.  I used stale Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls instead of Bread and part of a Mexican Chocolate Bread Pudding Recipe.  I have found this method of mixing recipes to be a fun, innovative, and a great way to use up odd ingredients.  It can be very easy on the pocketbook, too.  I have found that you can easily deviate from many recipes and eliminate costly ingredients but not detract from the taste.  There are some things you can't do without, for example, I don't deviate from the dough portion of the cinnamon rolls but play with the filling and the glaze.  I used the Bread Pudding Recipe as guide for portions and cooking times. First the recipes as they appeared in my cookbook. 

From Chef Jacqueline Mc Mahan as
published in The San Fransisco Chronicle
Cookbook Volume II

5 tsp active dry yeast
1/4 C warm Water
1 tsp granulated sugar
1/2 C slightly warm buttermilk
2 tsp. Vanilla
1 egg
1 1/2 C fresh or canned pumpkin puree
1/2 C Light Brown Sugar
1 TBSP Salt
1 Tsp Cinnamon
1/4 C Canola Oil
About 7 Cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/4 C Butter, Melted

1/2 C granulated sugar
1/2 C light brown sugar
2 TBSP Cinnamon
1/2 C Currants

1 TBSP Butter
1 TBSP Milk
1 1/4 C Powdered sugar
About 2 TBSP Boiling Water
1 tsp. Vanilla

To Make the Dough, Combine the yeast, warm water, and sugar in a bowl; set aside until foamy, about 5 minutes.

Blend together the buttermilk, vanilla, egg, pumpkin puree, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, and oil in a large bowl.  Stir in the yeast mixture, then the flour, 1/4 C at a time, until a soft dough forms and clings to the side of the bowl as you mix.

Transfer the dough to a floured work surface and knead for about 5 minutes, or until springy and smooth.  Add 1 TBSP of flour at a time to keep the dough from sticking.

Transfer the dough to an oiled mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until dough is doubled in size.  The rising time is longer due to the heaviness of the pumpkin.

Divide the dough into 2 equal portions.  Pat or roll each portion into a thick rectangle, about 8 by 12 inches.  Spread each rectangle with half the melted butter. 

To make the filling:  Combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and currants;  sprinkle half over each rectangle.  Press the currants into the dough.  Roll up each rectangle into a cylinder, then cut up each cylinder into about 9 thick rolls.  Place the rolls on parchment-covered or greased baking sheets.  Cover loosely with plastic wrap and set aside to rise for about 45 minutes or until doubled.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Bake the rolls for 22-25 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool for 20 minutes before glazing.  Note:  You must let them cool before glazing or the glaze will not stick to the rolls.

To make the glaze:  Combine the butter and milk in a bowl and warm in a microwave for about 30 seconds.  Or combing the milk and the butter in a saucepan and warm over low heat just until the butter melts.  Stir in the powdered sugar.  Add the boiling water and vanilla and whisk until smooth. 

Pour glaze over barely warm cinnamon rolls.

There are only 3 of us in our family and we can't eat these all before they go stale, although we really try.  I have had good luck freezing them in the past but decided bread pudding made with the cinnamon rolls might be worth trying.

From Chef Jacqueline Mc Mahan as published
in The San Fransisco Chronicle Cookbook Volume II

1/4 C Sugar
1 C Milk
1 Can (14oz) evaporated milk
3 C finely diced crust less bread, dried out in oven
4 oz semisweet chocolate, melted
1 TBSP Vanilla
1 tsp. instant espresso powder
2 eggs
2 egg yolks

1 C whipping cream
1 tsp. instant espresso powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1 TBSP powdered sugar


Place an ovenproof 2-quart baking dish or deep metal pan near the stove.  Put 3/4 C of the sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.  After 3 to 4 minutes, begin swirling the pan.  Do not stir.  Cook for 8 to 10 minutes (again, do not stir), or until the sugar caramelizes.  Immediately pour into the baking dish.

In the same pan, heat the milk and evaporated milk over medium heat stirring in the remaining 1/2 C Sugar.  Cook, stirring, until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from the heat and add the dry bread.  Push the bread into the milk and let it soak for 30 minutes. 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Place a roasting pan filled with 1 inch of water in the oven. 

Stir the chocolate, vanilla, and espresso powder into the mushy bread.  Beat together the eggs and egg yolks in a bowl;  add to the bread mixture.  Pour into the prepared baking dish, cover with aluminum foil and place the in the roasting pan in the oven. 

Transfer the pudding to a rack and let cool for 30 minutes.  Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. 

To serve, loosen the edges with a knife, then unmold the pudding onto a rimmed platter. 

Just before serving, make the topping.  Whip the cream so very soft peaks.  Stir in the espresso powder, vanilla, and powdered sugar.  Spoon a dollop on each serving.


I used dried cranberries instead of currants in the cinnamon roll recipe.  I have also used miniature chocolate chips, too.  I dried the cranberries myself.  I bought them by the bag full at the end of Thanksgiving last year.  I froze some and I also halved some and placed on the racks of my dehydrator and dried out.  I don't deviate from this recipe other than that. I did use milk with 1 tsp vanilla last time, too as I didn't have any buttermilk either. That is a classic substitute found in any standard cookbook. 

For the Bread Pudding, it is to be served cold, inverted like flan.  That just didn't sound appetizing to me, I like mine warm and gooey.  I skipped the first step, caramelizing the sugar, and baked it for the above mentioned time.  Mine should have baked longer but I decided to take it out then and serve it warm.  It was similar to a molten cake. If that is your choice, too, I would start checking it about half way through the baking time.  You want everything hot and bubbly. I also didn't need to dry the rolls out in the oven.  They were very dry when I made the pudding.  Note, the drier the bread the better it soaks up the egg mixture creating a custard like filling. 

I didn't have cream in the house but I had some leftover raspberry sauce from the last of the harvest at the beginning of November (a record for us!).  It was wonderful drizzled on top. 


In a sauce pan place equal amounts of sugar and raspberries.  Cook on low heat until sugar dissolves and sauce forms.  I let mine sit for about 20 minutes. Stir frequently. Taste.  Add lemon juice if needed to brighten flavors.  Store in glass jar in refrigerator.  Mine is still good and was made the first week on November. 

The Cinnamon Rolls, served with local bacon, and piping hot coffee on the morning they were made. 
In the background is a stack of Vintage Day of the Week Tea Towels and Fabrics that I used as a center piece.
I couldn't bear to put them in the cabinet and the tea towels are a definate hands off set! 

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