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Pumpkin Panettone Bread Pudding

(Makes one 9 x 13-inch bread pudding)
Pumpkin Panettone Bread Pudding
Pumpkin Panettone Bread Pudding

Bread Pudding:
One (1 pound) panettone, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 large eggs
One (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt

Crème Anglaise:
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated sugar

Bourbon Whipped Cream:
2 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon bourbon

Confectioners' sugar for dusting


To make the Bread Pudding:
Lightly butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
Spread the bread cubes evenly in the prepared dish; set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and all the remaining bread pudding ingredients.  Pour the mixture over the bread cubes.  Press the bread down with a spoon so that the custard covers every piece.  Let soak for 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Bake for 45 minutes.  The pudding should be set in the middle with lightly browned edges that are slightly pulling away from the sides of the dish.

To make the Crème Anglaise:
In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat the cream and vanilla until warm.
In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar.  Temper the eggs by slowly stirring 1/2 cup of the warm cream into the egg mixture.  Then, gradually whisk the egg mixture back into the remaining cream in the saucepan.  Return to the heat and stir constantly until the sauce begins to thicken and coats the back of a spoon, about 2-3 minutes.

To make the Bourbon Whipped Cream:
Place all the ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer.
Beat on high until soft peaks form. 
Transfer to a covered container and keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

To serve:
Dust the top of the bread pudding with confectioners' sugar. Cut the warm bread pudding into squares. Top each square with a spoonful or two of the Crème Anglaise and a dollop of the Bourbon Whipped Cream.

(The bread pudding should be served warm.  If you have made it ahead of time, it can be reheated in the oven or individual servings may be warmed in the microwave for about 20 seconds before adding the sauce and whipped cream.)
A classic bread pudding combines cubes of bread baked with a creamy custard.  In this recipe, the bread is a traditional Italian holiday bread, panettone, that is baked with a creamy pumpkin and spice-flavored custard.  Servings are then topped with a rich crème anglaise sauce and a dollop of bourbon-flavored whipped cream.  If you wish to simplify the recipe a bit, you can serve the bread pudding with a scoop of vanilla ice cream instead of the sauce.  The recipe uses one pound of bread cubes which is half of a
(2-pound) standard size panettone. 
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