I started looking for a valentine video a couple of weeks ago. There weren’t a lot that I considered suitable, but I did find one that seemed appropriate. It’s an extremely short cooking video. Since chocolate and fancy desserts figure highly in the celebration of St. Valentine’s Day, here it is:
I can hardly let you watch that without passing on the recipe from the Kitchy Kitchen:
1 baguette or french loaf, cubed and dry (stale bread is perfect), about 6-7 cups
3 cups half and half
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
6 eggs, lightly beaten
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, grated/chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoons sea salt
8 ounces creme fraiche or sour cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Lightly grease a 13 by 9-inch baking dish or 5-6 12 oz ramekins with butter and fill with the bread. Sift the brown sugar and cocoa into the half and half and mix well. Add the vanilla and salt to the beaten eggs. To make the brown butter, melt the butter over medium heat until the milk solids turn golden brown. Take off heat and pour into a bowl to cool (it can still burn in the warm pan). Combing with the egg mixture and add to the milk mixture, mixing well.
Stir the grated chocolate into the mixture. Pour the mixture over the cubed bread in the pan. Let the mixture stand, stirring occasionally for approximately 20 minutes or until bread absorbs most of the milk mixture. Bake the large pudding for 1 hour or 45 minutes in the small ramekins until set in a water bath.
To garnish, whip the creme fraiche until it forms soft peaks with the sugar and vanilla. Top the ramekins with a dollop or serve on the side. Enjoy!
I couldn’t give you a recipe without testing it, so I made this last Sunday. I made half the recipe which turned out to be six generous (unless you are an adolescent male) servings. I cut the sugar in half (using 1/4 cup) as I don’t like desserts that are too sweet, I eliminated the vanilla (I am allergic), I was a little more generous with the cocoa powder, and I served it with the left over “half and half” poured over it instead of using creme fraiche. I soaked and stirred the dried bread cubes in a bowl for easier mixing, and although I left them at least half an hour, I found that they had not absorbed enough of the liquid. When I make it again I will soak the bread at least an hour.
Did you note that I said “when I make it again …”? This is a keeper. Perhaps next time I will leave some of the semi-sweet chocolate in chunks, and maybe add some chopped candied ginger.