Mix torn bread with half-cooked bacon. Add beaten eggs, milk and grated cheddar cheese. Season lightly with salt, sugar and pepper. Top with cubes of cream cheese and butter. Bake. The result is a light and airy pudding, slightly sweet but not irritatingly so, that will have you hankering for second and third helpings.
I call it a pudding but it’s been given other names. Ree calls it an omelet; Elise calls it a casserole. I’ve baked it before but I omitted the greens yesterday. This second time to make the pudding was a collaboration between me and my daughters as we all pitched in not only to bake a gorgeous and delicious pudding but also to come up with a great blog presentation as well. Alex did the preparation, I did the assembly, Sam took most of the photos. I wish we could work together more often.
Makes one 12-inch round pudding.
8 slices of bread
1 c. of milk (I used skim milk but whole milk or even buttermilk may be substituted)
125 g. of mild cheddar cheese
1 tsp. of salt
3 tsps. of sugar
a pinch of pepper
200 g. of belly bacon
125 g. of cream cheese
75 g. (1/3 of a 255 g. block) of butter, chilled, plus a little more for greasing the baking dish
Crusty and chewy varieties like French bread and bagels work best but there’s nothing wrong with using just about any kind. We used sliced white loaf bread. Just tear the bread into fairly large pieces.
Cracks the eggs into a bowl and beat.
Pour in the milk while beating.
Grate the cheddar cheese over the bowl of eggs and milk. Well, you can grate it first then add to the egg and milk mixture afterward. If the angle of Alex’s arm looks awkward in the photo, that’s because Sam was telling her to please position the grater so that the underside was visible. :)
Season with salt, sugar and pepper.
Cut the bacon into small pieces. Place in a baking dish and cook the the oven for about 10 minutes. Scoop out the bacon, discard the fat.
Mix the bacon and bread together.
Butter a 12-inch baking dish and pour the bread and bacon mixture into it.
Then, pour the egg and milk mixture over the bread and bacon.
Cut the cream cheese into cubes.
Cut the chilled butter into cubes
Scatter the cubes of cream cheese on top of the pudding.
Do the same with the butter.
Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove the foil, bake for another 10 minutes or until the bottom and sides are lightly browned.
Let the pudding rest before cutting.
Serve sliced, by itself or with some meaty dish.