- 12 ounces bread (brioche, challah, or white, preferably stale (I used challah))
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 large eggs
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate (finely chopped)
- 1 cup milk chocolate chips
- 1 sleeve (10 crackers graham crackers, broken into ~1 inch pieces)
- 3 cups mini marshmallows
- Have a 9-by-13-inch baking pan at hand (a Pyrex pan is perfect here), as well as a roasting pan big enough to hold the baking pan in hot water. Line the roasting pan with a double thickness of paper towels.
- Cut the bread into 1-inch cubes. If the bread is stale, put it into the baking pan. If it is not stale, spread it out on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat and bake in a 350°F (175°C) oven to “stale” it for 10 minutes, then toss into the pan with the milk chocolate chips and graham crackers.
- Bring the milk and cream just to a boil.
- Fill a teakettle with water and put it on to boil; when the water boils, turn off the heat. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, yolks, and sugar together in a bowl. Still whisking, slowly drizzle in about one quarter of the hot milk mixture — this will temper, or warm, the eggs so they don’t curdle. Whisking all the while, slowly pour in the rest of the hot milk. Add the bittersweet chocolate and whisk it in gently until it is melted and the custard is smooth. Rap the bowl against the counter to pop any bubbles that might have formed, then pour the custard over the bread and press the bread gently with the back of a spoon to help cover it with liquid. Leave the pan on the counter, giving the bread the back-of-the-spoon treatment now and then, for 30 minutes.
- Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Put the baking dish holding the unbaked pudding into the roasting pan, and then slide the pan setup into the oven and very carefully pour enough hot water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the pudding pan. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the pudding is uniformly puffed, the top is dull and dry and a thin knife inserted deep into the center comes out clean.
- If you have a kitchen torch, remove pan from the oven and transfer the baking pan to a rack. Top evenly with marshmallows and using the kitchen torch, brown the marshmallows. If you don’t have a kitchen torch, keep the pan in the oven and set it to broil. Spread the marshmallows on top and let broil for about 3 minutes, or until the marshmallows are browned. Remove from oven and roasting pan and cool to room temperature.
- You could serve this pudding warm, but it is better at cool room temperature or even chilled — it also cuts better when it is cold. Serve the pudding simply plain or with chocolate sauce, marshmallow creme, or even whipped cream. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From My Home to Yours