Hi, this is Erin James. I’m the editor-in-chief of Cidercraft magazine, author of “Tasting Cider: The Cidercraft Guide to the Distinctive Flavors of North American Hard Cider” and bread pudding aficionado.
If we haven’t met, there’s one thing you should know about me: I like to eat. When I was writing “Tasting Cider” in early 2016 and testing the recipes we’d be featuring in our inaugural book, this one for maple bread pudding quickly became my favorite. Yes, it requires two cups of quality maple syrup and yes, that is not a cheap endeavor but let me tell you… it is one worthwhile.
The test kitchens at Angry Orchard developed this recipe well before I reached out asking if we could team up for a feature. I was told it was a staff favorite, often served for morning meetings and emptied from the dish long before said meeting was finished.
Marrying the flavors of maple and apple two ways, this divine, syrup-soaked bread pudding is a baking go-to for everything from the holidays to a lazy Sunday morning — both which can be accomplished in the next few days.
True story: I will be making this to serve as dessert for Christmas night and I am already wishing I was eating it sooner.
Maple Bread Pudding with Cider-Soaked Apples
Makes 4 servings
8 large eggs
1quart heavy cream
1 cup granulated sugar
2 cups dark maple syrup, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon pure maple flavoring or extract
1 cup Fuji apples, peeled, diced and soaked overnight in dry cider
1 pound brioche, cut into 2-inch cubes
Vanilla ice cream, for serving
Whisk together the eggs, cream, sugar, 1 cup of the maple syrup, vanilla and maple flavoring in a large bowl. Add the soaked apples and brioche; stir to coat. Butter a 9- by 13- by 2-inch baking dish. Transfer the bread mixture to prepared dish and let stand at room temperature for 1½ hours.
Preheat the oven to 375° F (190° C). Bake for 40 minutes, until golden brown, slightly risen in the center and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and, using a small knife or skewer, poke holes all over the pudding. Pour the remaining 1 cup maple syrup over the pudding and allow it to cool until just warm. Top with vanilla ice cream and serve.
Excerpted from “Tasting Cider” by Erin James, © by Sip Publishing. Photography © by Antonis Achilleos. Used with permission from Storey Publishing.