Bread Pudding with Vanilla Sauce
One of the most comforting desserts is bread pudding. This version is simple yet stunningly flavourful. A moist creamy pudding that holds its shape when served and is accompanied by a luxurious vanilla sauce to pour over each serving. You can as well skip the vanilla sauce and serve the pudding warm with vanilla ice-cream.
Warm the milk on low heat with the sugar while stirring until the sugar dissolves. Allow to cool completely. In a bowl, whip the eggs until frothy. Add the cooled milk, melted butter, vanilla essence, lemon zest, cinnamon powder and salt into the egg mixture and whisk together to combine. In a 7x11 baking dish, lay out the cubes of bread, keeping the crust facing up and scatter the nuts/raisins all over the bread. Pour the liquid mixture onto the bread. Then cover the dish and let the bread soak for at least an hour or two (in the fridge).
When ready to bake, preheat the oven at 170 C.
Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 30 mins. Then remove the foil and let it bake for another 15-20 minutes, keeping a close eye on it so that it does not burn. Once the crust looks golden brown over the top, remove the dish from the oven and let the pudding stand for about 20 mins before serving.
While the bread pudding is baking, make the Vanilla Sauce:
Whisk the sugar, flour, egg, butter, milk, salt and cinnamon together in a heavy saucepan until smooth. Heat over medium to low heat, whisking constantly until thickened and the sauce coats the back of a spoon. This should take about 10 to 12 minutes. Finally stir in the vanilla essence. Done!
You can let the sauce cool slightly before serving over the warm pudding.