Off the Wall: Brennan's Creole Bread Pudding Using Hot Dog Buns

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Brennan's Creole Bread Pudding
Last week, Christine Ha gave us some tips on what to do with all those leftover hotdog buns from the 4th. That's when EOW reader CameronByars chimed in with her two cents -

"Hot dog buns are also great for making bread pudding, as they are sweeter than other breads."

"Really?" I thought. I never made bread pudding and was under the impression you had to use artisan quality bread to turn out a decent dish. However, after some Googling, Cameron's tip didn't seem all that unusual. Still, I was curious to 1. make bread pudding and 2. see how these hot dog buns would hold up.

In contemplating what recipe I'd use, my eyes were immediately drawn to my bookshelf, where a copy of Houston Classic Desserts sits. And inside was recipe for Brennan's Creole Bread Pudding. Their recipe normally calls for 14 slices of day old French bread. Could a package of old hot dog buns compete?

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Pouring our custard mixture over the buns
The short answer is no. I guess I should preface this by saying that I've never actually had Brennan's bread pudding. So, for those of you who have, you're going to have to tell me how it compares. But in my opinion, hot dog buns were just too soft for this recipe. I do like a cakier bread pudding so I might be a bit of a poor judge, but, to me, this was just too soggy.

My friend, on the other hand, an apparent lover of soggy bread, thought it was great. One thing is for sure, the flavor was incredible. How can you go wrong with cinnamon, nutmeg, tons of sugar, and a sweet and creamy whiskey sauce? You really can't. It's certainly a good way to use up those old hot dog buns, but next time, I think I'll be using something else.

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Hot dog! My version of Brennan's Bread Pudding.
Does anyone have a tried and true bread pudding recipe? Have you ever used hot dog buns for it? If so, how'd yours turn out? And if Brennan's version is supposed to be super soggy, then put me in the kitchen and call me chef! Otherwise, let's just say...live and learn.

Brennan's Creole Bread Pudding

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 5 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 cups milk
  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 5 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 14 bread slices, 1-inch thick
  • 1 cups raisins
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan pieces

Method:

Preheat the oven to 300F.

In a large bowl, blend the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk in the eggs, milk, cream and vanilla

Tear the bread into big, bite-sized pieces and place in a lightly buttered 9-by-13-inch pan.

Pour the custard mixture over the bread and allow to soak until soft, about 1 hour. Stir the raisins into the pudding and top with nuts. Bake uncovered 1 1/2 hours.

Rye Whiskey Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 9 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup rye whiskey

Method:

Heat the cream and sugar in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan over medium-high heat until mixture begins to boil.

Mix the cornstarch and cold water in a small bowl until smooth; slowly whisk into simmering cream. Simmer 2 to 3 minutes.

Put the yolks into a stainless steel bowl; whisk. Temper the yolks by slowly whisking 1 cup hot, thickened cream mixture into yolks. Return the yolk mixture to hot cream mixture, whisking in slowly. After mixture is whisked together, cook over medium-low heat until mixture reaches 140F. Remove from heat and pour through a fine mesh strainer.

Add the whiskey, adjusting to taste, and keep warm until ready to use.

Notes:

The sauce can be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. When reheating, be sure to use a moderate temperature so the egg in the sauce doesn't curdle. Yields 8 to 12 servings.

Location Info

Brennan's of Houston

3300 Smith, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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12 comments
molly
molly

This looks delicious! Thanks for the idea...and the Sugar Rush!

Sophi Z
Sophi Z

Okay, i made this and I had to cut back on the brown sugar for the custard, glad I did. I also made Jack Daniels sauce instead of the rye whiskey one. Thats where I put the other cup of brown sugar.  By the way, I laid out the hot dog buns dressed with some left over dulce de leche and chopped pecans. Made presentation really fun. Thanks for the tip! 

bettyagogo
bettyagogo

To keep it from being soggy let the buns dry out a bit.  Either leave them out (not closed up in the bag) overnight or dry them in the oven at a low temp.

CameronByars
CameronByars

Sorry to hear it didn't turn out. I'll see if I can get my Mom's recipe and send it your way.

Christine Ha
Christine Ha

The only bread pudding I've made is Ina Garten's and uses croissants. I wonder if toasting the hot dog buns would help at all since French bread and croissants have a crustier crust, so maybe the hot dog buns need the same...?

Lynda Flores
Lynda Flores

This is so weird... I was totally looking for bread pudding recipes... must be something in the air...

CameronByars
CameronByars

My Mom's recipe is "buns, milk, eggs, butter, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla".... no measurements, she wings it every time and nails it.

I'd imagine that whipping cream is what made the bread pudding so soggy.

Stacy Zane
Stacy Zane

Yeah, probably. I guess it all depends on what you want though. Some people like soggy bread pudding, some people like a little it a little heartier. I'm in the latter category. How'd yours from Ina turn out? I don't trust her because I once attempted this recipe of hers THREE times and it never came out good. I don't think she reveals full recipes; that, or she jacks with them so no one will have her secret. I followed that recipe to a tee! 

Christine Ha
Christine Ha

The first time I made it, it was good. The last time I made it, it wasn't sweet enough. (I think I had substituted brown sugar the second time--what a mistake.) I haven't made too many of her things, but they've generally all turned out okay. What did you make that I should avoid?

Ali
Ali

I like cakier bread puddings, too. I haven't had Brennan's but the best I've had in the city is Gravitas. Thick and not soggy with a buttery cinnamony crunch on top. Ladies. To. Die. For. 

Stacy Zane
Stacy Zane

It was this cake and icing - http://www.foodnetwork.com/rec...

Minus all the candy on it. She made it for a kid's picnic but I was trying to make it for a friend's birthday. And this was a while back so I don't quite remember what went wrong - I'm looking at the recipe again now and it seems pretty straightforward. But I'm telling you, something is OFF! All I remember is that I tried THREE times, made multiple trips to the store, and that cake NEVER saw the light of day! So Ina's on my shit list. Where she's been for quite a while....

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