Vegetarian Feast :: Chocolate Bread Pudding with Sun-dried Cherries and Whipped Creme Fraiche
1/2 cup sun-dried cherries 1/3 cup cognac 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped 3 eggs 1 cup heavy cream ½ cup sour cream ½ cup sugar 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 3 cups 1/2 inch cubed sourdough bread, crusts removed and dried overnight
1 cup creme Fraiche 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar
Combine the cherries and cognac and soak for 2 hours or overnight
Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, cream, sour cream, sugar, cinnamon and vanilla. Whisk in the chocolate. Fold in the bread cubes, cherries and cognac. Let the mixture sit in a warm place for 1-2 hours to allow the bread to absorb the flavors. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spoon the mixture into an 8 cup souffle dish or pie pan. Place the dish in a roasting pan and transfer to the middle shelf of the oven. Pull the shelf out halfway and pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the side of the dish, make sure no water comes over the side into the dish.
Bake for 35-40 minutes until the pudding is puffed and set to the touch. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool slightly before serving.
Serve the pudding with creme fraiche and dusted with powdered sugar. Garnish with mint if desired.
Recipe Courtesy of Peter Berley Photography by Karen Mordechai