Friday, October 01, 2004

Sugar High Friday #1 - Chocolate Bread Pudding with White Chocolate Sherbet

Jennifer at Domestic Goddess has proposed yet another communal cooking and blogging event – Sugar High Fridays: the International Sweet-Tooth Blogging Extravaganza or SHF:ISTBE for short (actually, either one is a mouthful!) Mmm…sweets…sign me up!

The theme for this first Sugar High Friday is white chocolate. I have nibbled on white chocolate on occasion, but I don’t think I’ve ever cooked with it before. I couldn’t get my imagination in gear for this event, so I searched the Food Network website and found a recipe from Gale Gand for Chocolate Bread Pudding with White Chocolate Sherbet. At first I planned to make only the sherbet, but that wouldn’t have been terribly photogenic, so I racked my brain trying to think of something that would complement the sherbet both in terms of flavor and visually. Nothing seemed quite right. Finally, I acknowledged to myself that what I wanted was REAL chocolate. To be specific, I wanted that chocolate bread pudding that was included in the recipe.

I made a deal with myself – I would make the bread pudding, but I would have to cut the recipe down to a single serving. For most of the ingredients I simply divided the amount called for by 6. For the bread I used 1 ½ slices of Pepperidge Farm white bread – though if I were to do this again I would increase that to 2 slices. I happened to have some leftover heavy cream, which I used, but I substituted skim milk for the half-and-half. I think another time I would use all milk.

For the sherbet I used El Rey Icoa White Chocolate, which is touted as being “Venezuelan single bean origin”. The sherbet couldn’t have been easier – however the melted chocolate seemed to float to the top of the mixture as it chilled in the refrigerator. When I was ready to freeze it, there was a soft skin on top. Fortunately, it dissolved back into the mixture when I stirred it, and when I strained the mixture there were no lumps.

I ate the bread pudding just slightly warm with a scoop of the white chocolate sherbet. It was heaven, but oh so rich. I should have split the bread pudding into two servings, and next time I would, but I couldn’t stop myself. Just in case you haven’t looked at the recipe yet, not only does it have chocolate, cream, and eggs in it, it also has vanilla bean (which I recently realized is just as addictive as chocolate) and dried cherries. Topping it with white chocolate sherbet was overkill, but I’m not complaining. The sherbet was wonderful – the first bite was just like biting into a white chocolate bar, only cold, and wet, and with more of that lovely vanilla bean.

I went to bed with a heavy stomach but a happy heart. When’s the next Sugar High Friday?


Reid said...

Hi Cathy,

I love chocolate bread pudding, but I would think that the white chocolate sherbet would put this over the top. I would have a major sugar rush and probably not be able to sleep for days afterwards...

Zarah Maria said...

Cathy this sounds DELISH! Sugar-rush indeed, but I really like the idea of chocolate in the bread pudding - I often find it to go to custard-y, but the (dark) chocolate might cut through it.. And sherbet with white chocolate - mmmm... I'm definetly game for the next SHF as well!

Anonymous said...

That sounds fantastic! White chocolate sherbet sounds incredibly intriguing, and the chocolate bread pudding sounds wonderful (dried cherries! Yum). Very interesting to see the different things people have decided to make with white chocolate.


Anonymous said...

Cathy I am so impressed by your combination of dark and white chocolates in your recipe! This dessert looks rich and sinful...but bring it on! Indulgence is a good thing.

Thanks for being part of the first ever SHF...looking forward to seeing what you come up with next month!


Cathy said...

Hi Reid - yes, this was a bit much - but it was a special occasion! Actually, as I hinted in my post, my problem with it was the richness rather than with it being overly sweet. It was really good though - it would be interesting to try to lighten the recipe.

Zarah Maria - Thanks - it was! With all the chocolate, vanilla, etc. the base was more like a rich pudding than a custard.

Thanks Alice - the white chocolate sherbet was sort of like ice milk with both subtle chocolate and pronounced vanilla flavors - really good! I haven't looked at all the SHF entries yet - but I'm looking forward to it!

Thank YOU Jennifer - SHF is a great idea and I enjoyed having an excuse to make something so sinful!