Thursday, December 24, 2009

Hong Kong: Christmas eve dinner.

All the restaurants in Hong Kong charged a 100% to 300% premium for Christmas eve dinner.
So, we stayed home and I cooked.

Citrus salad (dried cranberries, oranges, grapefruits, goat cheese)

Caprese "sandwich" salad

Blueberry, white chocolate bread pudding "a la Vardy" with Amaretto cream sauce.

Due to popular demand (and Christmas spirit), here's the recipe:

White Chocolate and Blueberry Bread Pudding a la Steve Vardy

Serves 6

For the pudding:

1 tbsp unsalted butter, softened, plus 1 tbsp melted butter

2 large eggs

1 ½ cup heavy cream (35% cream)

½ cup milk

½ cup light brown sugar, packed

¼ tsp cinnamon

3 cups day-old bread, cubed to ½ inch pieces

3 oz white chocolate, chopped

½ cup blueberries

¼ cup dried blueberries

For the Amaretto cream sauce:

½ tbsp cornstarch

1/8 cup Amaretto liqueur

¾ cup hot heavy 35% cream

1/8 cup sugar

½ tsp vanilla

To make the bread pudding:

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degree F. Use 1 tbsp of the softened butter to grease a 4 x 9 inch baking dish.

2.) In a large bowl, whisk eggs. Whisk in cream, milk, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Add bread cubes, chocolate, and blueberries and stir well, then mix in 1 tbsp of melted butter. Set aside for 30 minutes so that the bread will absorb the egg mixture.

3.) Pour egg into prepared baking dish and bake until firm when pressed in the centre, about 1 hour. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack until just warn, about 20 minutes.

To prepare the sauce:

1.) In a small bowl dissolve cornstarch in Amaretto, then add to hot cream, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cook, whisking for 30 seconds. Remove from heat and add 1/8 cup sugar. Whisk until dissolved. Add vanilla. Let sauce cool to room temperature before serving with bread pudding. This pudding is terrific with Cinnamon Gelato or with another similar flavour.