Cranberry Poundcake Bread Pudding

One of my favorite desserts that Sean makes is pound cake. It’s a simple cake that tastes just like childhood to me as I ate Entenmann’s pound cake by the pound whenever my parents bought it. This twist on bread pudding using home made pound cake as the “bread,” though really labor intensive, is a winner. Especially for holiday parties.

There are three main steps:

1- make a pound cake

2- make a cranberry compote

3- make the poundcake bread pudding

I’ll walk you through these three steps.

Pound Cake

Ingredients-

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Directions-

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a six cup loaf pan.

In a KitchenAid stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together on a high speed. Add eggs one at a time, vanilla, and salt and mix until well combined. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add the flour until it’s all combined.

Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for an hour or so until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let it cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing it from the pan to cool on a wire rack.

Cranberry Compote

The next step is to make a cranberry compote. Sean added a couple bags of frozen cranberries to a pan on medium heat like you’d start to make a cranberry sauce. He then added a little water, approximately 1/2 cup of sugar,  a handful of frozen strawberries, a handful of frozen blueberries, and some frozen raspberries. This will turn into a sauce if you let it simmer for 30-40 minutes. He added some orange zest at the end.

This part of the recipe can be adjusted to your likes. The addition of sweeter berries allows for a little less sugar and still makes the cranberry sauce really sweet.

The final step is to assemble the bread pudding.

Cut the poundcake up into cubes and let it sit out at room temperature over night to get a little dry.

Cranberry Poundcake Bread Pudding

Ingredients:

  • 1 loaf poundcake cut into cubes
  • 2 TB melted butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • tsp vanilla extract
  • 1.5 cups cranberry compote

Preheat oven to 350.

Put the pound cake cubes in a square pyrex baking dish and drizzle melted butter over the top.

In your KitchenAid stand mixer, combine the eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, and cranberry compote and mix until well combined. Pour over the pound cake and lightly push down on it with a fork to be sure the bread is covered and soaking it all up. Let this sit on the counter for 45 minutes or so to be sure it has soaked up the mixture before baking for 45 minutes and has cooked through.

Chef Sean served food to Opera on Tap Colorado at Upslope Brewing Company, and he served this dessert paired with their Christmas Ale. Smear a little extra compote on the plate and a dollop on top and shove a fork in it!

Enjoy!

Greek Honey Cake

Chef Sean Smith and I, besides helping others throw exciting dinner parties, like to throw dinner parties at our own home. He’s usually in charge of every course, but he asked me to make dessert for our Greek-themed party a few weeks ago. I searched through dozens of Greek dessert recipes looking for something without filo dough and for a dessert that I could make in a reasonable period of time as real estate is very valuable and limited in our tiny kitchen.

I found a Greek Honey Cake recipe on Allrecipes that I just loved and it’s definitely one we’ll make in the future for clients. Maybe next time I’ll remember to snap a photo before eating a piece as well!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup cane sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3-4 tablespoons honey

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9 inch square or round baking dish.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and orange rind. Set aside.
  3. In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and the 3/4 cup of cane sugar. Add in the eggs, one at a time.
  4. Beat in the flour mixture alternatively with the milk, mixing just until incorporated.
  5. Stir in the walnuts.
  6. Pour batter into the pan and bake for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool at least 15 minutes before cutting.
  7. Drizzle honey over the top of cut pieces of cake and enjoy.

Rhubarb Pie

Chef Sean Smith is a fan of Martha Stewart’s recipes because they are easily multiplied. That essentially means she nails the ingredient ratios so if you’re making a double or triple batch of cookies, you can be confident that doubling or tripling her recipe will end up with something delicious. So, when I was tasked with making a pie for our clients, I went right to Martha.

The recipe starts by suggesting you make this pie the day before you plan to serve it, which is exactly what I did. I suggest you make your pie crust first and keep it cold in the refrigerator. Make your crumble topping second and keep it cold in the fridge as well until you’re ready to sprinkle it on top of the filling. Below you’ll find three sections: dough, filling, and crumble topping.

Ingredients for the Pie Dough:

  • 2.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 cups cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1/4 (or a little more if needed) ice water

The easiest way to make dough is to add the flour, sugar, salt, and butter to a food processor and give it a whirl. Then slowly add the ice water until it’s dough. Finish by forming it into a ball, wrap it in parchment paper, and refrigerate until you’re ready to use it.

Ingredients for the Pie Filling:

  • All- purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1 3/4 pounds (approximately 6 cups) rhubarb with the ends trimmed and cut crosswise into 3/4 inch pieces
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Pinch of salt

Ingredients for Crumble:

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 6 tablespoons chilled butter

And now to make the pie! Here’s my pie before baking, just for reference.

  1. Place the pie dough on parchment paper and roll it out to fit in a 9 in pie pan. Fit the dough into the pan, trim/crimp your edges, and refrigerate for an hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 with the rack at the lowest level.
  3. Add the crumble ingredients to a bowl and mix until the butter is somewhat evenly distributed. Chill in the fridge until you reach step 5.
  4. In a large bowl, toss the rhubarb with sugar, cornstarch, and salt.
  5. Pour filling into the pie crust, distribute it evenly, and sprinkle the crumble topping on top.
  6. Place pie pan on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. This is important as it will help clean up be a synch!
  7. Place your pie in the oven and lower it to 375 degrees. Bake for approximately 1.5 hours and cool completely before serving.

Mother’s Day Private Chef Dinner

Chef Sean and I had the honor of cooking a three course dinner for clients to celebrate Mother’s Day this year in downtown Boulder. He was in charge of everything except the Rhubarb Pie, which I successfully put together the day before.

I set the table for four while he was busy cooking. The first course was delectable- Crab cakes with a watercress, mizuna, and apple salad and a champagne mustard vinaigrette.

Crab cakes with watercress and mizuna.

The second course was planned for the Texans visiting family in Boulder: Steak and potatoes.

Chef Sean Smith grills steaks at a client's home in Boulder.

Chef Sean made twice baked potatoes filled with pancetta, roasted garlic, parmesan, ricotta, and green onion served on top of sautéed spinach and chard from the Boulder Farmer’s Market. The steaks were topped with a relish of roasted peppers and pickled chilies (he pickled the chilies last summer during pepper season at the market).

Grilled steaks with pickled pepper relish, twice baked potatoes over sauteed greens.

We ended with my Rhubarb Pie.

It’s always fun cooking for hungry clients. Please let us know what we can cook for you!

Cheers~

© 2017 A Bolder Home LLC. All Rights Reserved. | Boulder, CO Personal Chef Services