Wow - a non-challenge post? Shocking!
I know I keep saying we've been busy, but that's not really a good excuse. Yes, I'm still cooking and baking, but I feel that I've been in a bit of a blog rut. And for that I apologize. But I promise I have not forgotten about you, and I greatly appreciate that you are here reading this. Thank you!!
So, I know how it sounds... vegan bread pudding... honestly, only the hard-core vegans I know find the thought of it appealing. I mean... the whole idea of bread pudding is the custard, rich with eggs and milk (or, even better, cream!). But when one member of the family is allergic to those two key ingredients. well, it just doesn't seem fair to load up a dish of deliciousness with things he can't eat.
Believe it or not, this recipe is super easy. And tasty enough that non-vegans like it!!
It starts the way "normal" bread pudding starts - with bread. Lots and lots of bread, all cut up into cubes.
And then we go to the "custard." Only, in this case, it's not custard. It's coconut milk (or whatever milk you choose), maple syrup and spices.
If you're lucky enough to have a cute baking assistant, by all means, have him help you mix together the "custard."
Once the bread soaks up the "custard," mix in some mashed bananas and chocolate chips.
Then just smoosh everything into a sprayed loaf pan.
Yes I said smoosh.
Trust me, it's what you have to do.
Into the oven, everything all toasty and golden...
...then all that's left to do is to wait for it to cool... and to find someone brave enough to taste it. A lot of people were a bit... put off by the word "vegan" in the title.
But then they tasted it. And were shocked. This is very rich and very, very delicious. With pockets of chocolatey and banana-y goodness mixed in, this is an absolutely delicious treat. That you can even have for breakfast, if you are so inclined... just sayin'...
So call it allergen-friendly if you must, but definitely give this a try - I promise you won't be disappointed!
Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding
6 cups 1″ cubed stale bread (about 1 lb)
1 cup chocolate chips
3 ripe bananas, roughly mashed
2-2 1/4 cups rice milk, almond milk, soy milk or coconut milk (I used coconut milk beverage)
3 tablespoons arrowroot powder or tapioca flour (I used cornstarch)
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 x 5 loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place cubed bread in a large bowl.
In a small bowl whisk together 1/2 cup of the milk you are using with the arrowroot powder (cornstarch) until no lumps remain. Add 1 1/2 cups of the milk you are using, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg and whisk to combine. Pour over cubed bread and stir to coat every piece. Allow to sit for at least 15 minutes for liquid to soak into bread. Depending on what kind of bread you use and how stale it is, you may need to add a bit more milk - just do so slowly, then allow more soaking time till every piece of bread is saturated and there’s a little bit of extra liquid. Mixture should look mushy and wet. Fold in chocolate chips and bananas. Pour mixture into loaf pan, patting down to make an even top.
Bake 28-35 minutes till top is puffed, slightly browned and feels firm. Allow to cool slightly before slicing and serving. Also pudding can be scooped with an ice cream scoop when slightly cooled.