I bought a baguette and it got hard before I used it. I didn't want to waste it though and decided to make some bread pudding. I used some ingredients I've never used before and came up with this recipe. I was deciding between Bread Pudding Ambrosia and Tropical Bread Pudding. You'll have to tell me what you think.
1My baguette was already dried out when I started. If yours is too, then use a chopping knife and slice it all into thin slices about 1/2 thick. Then stack some of them and cut them in half and half again, cutting the stack into quarters or even into sixths depending on the size of your baguette. The aim is to cube the bread. Put the bread cubes into a bowl to keep your cutting surface clear.
If your starting with a fresh baguette you will need to use the quick dry method. The baguette will be easier to slice but you will have to spread the cubes out on a cookie sheet and bake them for about 10 minutes at 400 degrees in the oven to dry them out a bit. You don't want to toast them only dry them out. If you prepare the bread the day before you can put the oven at a lower temperature and turn the oven off and let them dry out overnight. If you use the quick method then let them cool before using.
2In another bowl add your eggs, cream, milk, vanilla and cinnamon. Use a whisk to blend the ingredients. You could also put it in a blender or use a mixer, just so it's it's thoroughly blended.
3Take each chunk of pineapple and cut it into four pieces. You could use crushed but you'd have to drain it more and the pieces would be to small. When you take these chunks and cut it into fourths the pieces are just right.
4Add the raisins, coconut and pineapple pieces to the bread cubes and pour the egg mixture over top of it. Let it soak into the bread for 20 minutes before spreading out into your pan.
5Spread the mixture out in a glass baking dish. I used a dish that measures 13 1/2 inches by 9 1/2 inches. You can use a smaller dish the only difference will be the pudding will be deeper. Just make sure your dish is deep enough so it all fits in. Cut six maraschino cherries in half so you have twelve cherry halves and put them on the top four rows of three. This way each piece, when you cut it, will have a half of a cherry on top.
6Bake at 350 degrees for one hour. Some ovens cook hotter then others so after 50 minutes check it. Mine was perfect at 60 minutes.
7After you remove the pudding from the oven allow it to cool at least 30 minutes. Some people like it cold and some warm. I like it warm. You can cool it overnight if you like in the refrigerator. Either way pour the sauce on while it is still warm. If you prefer to cut calories, you can leave off the sauce and top it with some cream, milk or whipped cream.
8The sauce is made using the remaining ingredients, the powdered sugar, butter, milk and rum extract. If you would rather use real rum you can leave out the extract and milk. I think it is to strong and then you can only serve to adults. Cream the butter into the powdered sugar. Add the rum extract and milk. Beat it. The sauce needs to be thin enough to pour so if needed add more milk.
9Drizzle the sauce over top of the pudding and serve or chill.