White Chocolate Orange Bread Pudding

One of the girls in my class brought me a loaf of her grandma's sourdough bread last Monday, only because I had been begging her to bring me some since she's always talked about how amazing it is. Her grandma bakes 6 loaves every Monday and Friday so lucky for me when I got to school Monday a fresh warm loaf of Ann Hunter's Grandmother's Sourdough Bread was in my locker. I immediately opened up the tin foil and grabbed a hunk out of it. It was one of the best breads I had ever had, it tasted like our friends' "healing bread" she would make back in Nashville. I ate about a quarter of the loaf throughout that day before bringing it home! It was so fresh and fluffy and perfectly sweet. I could've eaten the whole thing but I had to stop myself to save some for the rest of my family. My oldest brother would love this bread and probably would've eaten the rest of it. Thankfully, he's 2,000 miles across the country because I would've never gotten to make this bread pudding. It was Wednesday and the loaf had about 1/3 gone so my mom told me I should make something with it. I thought of bread pudding and then I started to grab the basics for it; milk, eggs, sugar, the amazing bread, cinnamon... I was just going to make a traditional one but then I thought, "What's the fun in that?" So that's when I thought of making a white chocolate chip and orange bread pudding w/ an orange caramel sauce. But then I thought about making it somewhat healthy. So I looked up a recipe for a healthy bread pudding- I know, shocking. But I didn't want to waste the bread and this was the first time I had ever made bread pudding. I found a recipe that sounded like it would never work, but it did... with a few tweaks of my own.

Bread Pudding:  5-6 servings

2 1/2 cups of cubed bread
1/2 large orange zest
1/2 cup water
1 can evaporated milk
1 egg, 3 egg whites
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/4 tsp. almond extract
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
 3 tbs. white chocolate chips

Mix the eggs, milk, water, & extracts together with a fork. Add the cinnamon and orange zest.
Beat until all the egg is mixed in evenly.
Bake the bread with a drizzle of agave at 375º until lightly toasted (about 3 minutes). Place an even layer at the bottom of a greased loaf pan (with coconut spray oil). Add about a tbs. of the chocolate chips evenly. Pour some of the custard to soak the bread. Add another layer of bread and white chocolate chips and custard. Add the last layer of whatever bread is left, white chocolate chips and custard. Bake for 5 minutes at 350º. Lower to 250º and bake for 35-45 minutes.

While the bread pudding is setting...

Orange Caramel Sauce:

1/2 orange juice & zest
3 tbs. water
3 tbs. coconut sugar
2 tsp. agave

Heat the water and sugar on medium heat until all sugar is dissolved. Add the orange juice, zest and agave. Mix and simmer until all is reduced to a semi-hick caramel. About 10 minutes.

After bread pudding is set pour caramel drizzle on top and top with toasted almonds and orange zest and fresh basil. Serve with light ice cream or light whipped cream (optional).

Sorry! For some reason I forgot to take pictures of this!


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