1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Dash of salt
1 cup water
11/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Place bread cubes in a buttered 1-quart baking dish.
In a saucepan, heat milk, sugar, butter and salt over low heat just until butter melts.
In a bowl, beat eggs; whisk in warm milk mixture. Stir in vanilla. Stir in raisins if using. Pour mixture over bread. Place baking dish in a shallow pan of hot water. Bake, uncovered at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes or until a knife inserted one inch from edge comes out clean.
Lemon sauce: In a small saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch and salt. Stir in water and lemon peel; bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in butter, and lemon juice. Best served warm or at room temperature.
1. Chocolate: One of the most popular new versions of bread pudding is chocolate, and I must say it is very good. To make, add about 4 ounces of coarsely chopped semisweet chocolate to the milk (or cream if recipe uses) mixture. Stir until well combined, and whisk into egg mixture.
2: Cran-Orange Pecan: Simmer 1/3-cup dried cranberries in 1/2-cup orange juice until plump, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain cranberries, fold into soaked bread along with 1 tablespoon orange zest and 1/3-cup toasted pecan pieces.
(Suggested amounts when recipe is for four servings)
Patricia Altomare invites feedback. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.