It is all about pumpkins at Trader Joe’s at this time of the year. The store tries to outdo itself by adding more pumpkin flavored items to its shelves, everything from pumpkin beer to pumpkin salsa. Not a big pumpkin fan myself. Growing up in the Northeast of Scotland, Halloween lanterns were carved from turnips, or swedes as the English call them. About all you can do with turnips, or Neeps as we called them in the North East of Scotland, is cook them and mash them with a wee bit of butter and a pinch of sugar.
However, I was rather excited when I saw pumpkin panettone in my local Trader Joe’s store. I give you a seasonal version of one of favourite desserts, bread pudding. If you can get your hands on the pumpkin spiced pumpkin seeds also sold at Trader Joe’s at this time of year, then they are wonderful sprinkled over the top. For those of you reading in the UK, my apologies, and I would not recommend trying this recipe with turnips.
New Orleans White Chocolate Bread Pudding with Bourbon Caramel Sauce and Candied Pecans
4 cups/2 pints/960ml heavy cream
Splash of vanilla
1/3 cup/2.5oz/65g sugar
half of I lb. pumpkin panettone
For the Sauce
4oz/110g/one stick butter
6 oz soft brown sugar
6 tablespoons heavy cream
spiced pumpkin seeds ( thank you Trader Joes!)
Add cream to a pan and heat until it just reaches boiling point. The technical term for this is 'scalding' the cream.
In a separate bowl, mix eggs, sugar and vanilla together.
Add the hot cream to the egg mixture, whisking constantly.
Cut the crust off the panettone, and then slice into half-inch triangles.
Layer panettone in a medium sized casserole dish then cover with the egg mixture. Refrigerate overnight, or at least for a few hours to allow the mixture to soak into the bread
Preheat Oven to 350F
Take a deep dish wide enough to fit the casserole dish and fill with enough water to come half way up the sides of the dish.
Bake in oven until the pudding puffs and is set in the center, about 45 minutes. Cool slightly; serve with whipped cream and hot caramel sauce. .
To make the Caramel Sauce
Place the first three ingredients for the sauce into a saucepan and heat gently until sugar has melted and sauce is bubbling.
When serving top with spiced pumpkin seeds and whipped cream.