Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Who’s Brenda?

Here in Massachusetts, there’s a local chain of restaurants called the Piccadilly Pub. It’s not a restaurant that ever causes me to rave and wax rhapsodic about its menu items. But it’s a reliable restaurant with reasonable prices for generally good fare. However, recently we stopped in at the Pic up near UMASS Medical Center (near the intersection of Shrewsbury Street and Route 9) for a quick meal. After we finished our main meal, the waitress asked if we’d like dessert. Chuck ordered “Brenda’s Bread Pudding”. I have nothing against bread pudding, but rarely order dessert out in a restaurant unless chocolate is a key ingredient, so I passed. The waitress, obviously much more intelligent than I am, brought Chuck’s generous serving of “Brenda’s Bread Pudding” with two spoons! Chuck took a bite and got a look on his face that said “YUM”. He kindly slid the plate over toward me. The warm, creamy, custardy bread pudding was swirled with cinnamon, dotted with plump raisins and drizzled over all with a caramel sauce. I dipped the tip of my spoon into the sauce and immediately was transported back to my grandparents’ living room. Gagee and Gramps always had a dish of cellophane wrapped Kraft Caramels on an end table. This sauce tasted exactly like them. The bread pudding was excellent. And, surprisingly, the addition of the caramel sauce did not make the whole dessert cloyingly sweet. It just all went together very well. There was nary a drop of chocolate in sight, but it was an extremely satisfying dessert. By the way, I think Brenda’s version may be a seasonal special, so you’d do well to swing by sooner rather than later.

Now, who’s this Brenda and how do I get her recipe?

Update: DancingMorganMouse kindly left a recipe for her killer caramel sauce in the comments section. Thanks Morgan!


dancingmorganmouse said...

You know you can add squares of lovely dark chocolate as well as raisins to your bread & butter pud!
Sounds like the custard was caramalised before it was poured over the bread - shouldn't be hard to make it yourself!

Pink Granite said...

Hi DMM -
Oooh, adding chocolate would be gilding the lily - and that would be a good thing!

Actually, there was no caramel in the bread pudding itself. But the custardy part of the bread pudding was very moist and creamy, yet perfectly cooked.
The caramel sauce, really tasted just like melted caramels - perhaps with a dash of cream to make it flow.

I've made bread pudding but after tasting this one, I think mine was too dry, with too many sticky-out bread bits getting crunchy (read dry)!
Thanks for the tips!
- Lee

dancingmorganmouse said...

oooh, make the sticky bit of sticky date pudding - true caramel sause of the most wonderful kind, I'll dig it out for you! My sister and I have both been known to just make the "sticky" and forget the pudding altogether!

dancingmorganmouse said...

Ta da -
The Sticky bit of Sticky Date Pudding (the only bit worth eating IMHO).
1 cup brown sugar
300ml thickened cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
60g butter
Combine all the above in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until sauce comes to the boil. It should go the most beautiful caramel colour. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for a few minutes. Spoon it straight out of the pan and feel the power of wonderfulness!

Pink Granite said...

Hi DMM -
"feel the power of wonderfulness"
Love it!
It looks decadently delicious!
Thank you!!!
- Lee