Want to go straight to the recipe? Click here to find my recipe for coffee and raspberry bread pudding.
Has your relationship with coffee changed drastically over the years? Mine has. In university, coffee was a necessity. It was lifeblood that kept me going. During my undergrad, there were daily study sessions in the café attached to the university. I practically lived there so I knew all the baristas by name and they all knew mine. If you needed to find me, I was either at the café or I was in a chem lab. They played a “Best of Bob Marley” album over and over again in that café. To this day, I can’t hear Bob Marley without thinking of undergrad and those coffee shop study sessions. In grad school, my coffee habit escalated and coffee became more than a sip-while-I-study drink. I drank really cheap, really bad coffee all day long, all the time. It was awful. I’d like to think I drowned it in milk to get my daily dose of calcium, but it was more to cover up the bad coffee taste. In grad school, I drank more coffee than water. I basically survived on coffee and ibuprofen for years, until I snapped when I graduated.
At the end of grad school, besides being awarded a giant, fancy diploma, I think I graduated to better coffee. I gave up bad coffee altogether and I stopped with my bad habit of 6 (or maybe it was 8) coffees a day. Now, most every coffee that passes my lips comes from a third wave roaster or a local coffee shop. Does that make me a coffee snob? I’m sure that some would say so, but I don’t care. I want a good coffee and I want to savour and enjoy it. I want my coffee beans to come from somebody who took the time to carefully select and roast the beans to bring out their best character and qualities (instead of burning the oils out of them until they taste like garbage). Coffee is a treat, not something to guzzle all day long. My coffee breaks are a special moment in the day. My relationship with coffee is not what it used to be, and I am definitely happy about that.
This month, Food Bloggers of Canada introduced me to Parachute coffee, a Canadian company with a monthly subscription service: every month, Parachute coffee teams up with a different small, Canadian coffee roaster to send you the best coffee. I honestly think the concept is brilliant. Parachute takes away all the excuses that make you buy stale, burned, grocery store brand coffee: Parachute coffee delivers freshly roasted coffee right to your doorstep every month. Since most of us can’t necessarily afford to travel across Canada to try all the different third wave cafés, every month is like a trip to a different local roaster with information about the beans and the country of origin. The package comes with brewing and storage tips too: did you know that you should use water that has been heated just below boiling temperature (around 195–205 fahrenheit)? And, before you ask me how you are supposed to consistently boil water to that temperature, I can suggest this Cuisinart “Perfect Temp” kettle to help you out (Amazon), which is my method of choice (yes, I own and love this kettle so I can happily recommend it to you).
I love to bake with coffee because you can use it to flavour so many different treats, like slice-and-bake cookies, frosting for chocolate drop cookies, sweet Swedish knotted buns, smoothies, and cake frosting.
The inspiration behind this bread pudding—besides the fact that I had a bag of freshly roasted coffee beans via Parachute Coffee delivered right to my door— was a breakfast I had in New York City in June: the breakfast was created by Christina Tosi (my hero!) in partnership with Kellogg’s: a bowl of mini wheats, topped with freshly ground coffee, raspberries, and served with her sweet Cereal Milk beverage. I thought it was the best bowl of cereal I had ever had, and I took the toppings of that cereal bowl, and transformed them into a bread and butter pudding of sorts, which is basically like baked French toast, if you ask me. The freshly ground coffee works much like cocoa nibs in this recipe, giving texture and crunch to every bite, not just coffee flavour. I discovered as I made this recipe how good buttered toast sprinkled with “coffee sugar” is (instead of the traditional cinnamon sugar). Try it and you will see what I mean!
Of course, all good bread puddings must come with a hefty drizzling of crème anglaise, so I served mine with a coffee-infused crème anglaise (a fancy term for custard sauce). I declared on Facebook that I wanted to marry this coffee crème anglaise and have its babies, and I wasn’t even kidding. I kinda wanted to drink it (okay, perhaps I did, just a little).
To subscribe to Parachute Coffee’s monthly coffee delivery service (or to try it out for a month), visit the “Subscribe” tab of their website at http://www.parachutecoffee.com. I bet Parachute will change your relationship with coffee. And while you wait for your coffee delivery, here’s that recipe for coffee & raspberry bread pudding with coffee crème anglaise that I made with this month’s coffee from Parachute!
Coffee raspberry bread pudding with coffee crème anglaise
Coffee & raspberry bread pudding
This recipe is a take on bread and butter pudding, flavoured with coffee and raspberries, and served with a coffee crème anglaise
For the coffee sugar
- 20 grams coffee beans 2 tbsp
- 100 grams granulated sugar 1/2 cup
For the bread pudding
- 9 slices bread I used a "carré blanc, ~ basic white bread
- 60 grams unsalted butter 1/4 cup, more if needed, softened
- 70 grams coffee sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 66 grams granulated sugar 1/3 cup
- 375 mL 2% milk 1 3/4 cups
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 pint of raspberries
For the coffee crème anglaise
- 250 mL 2% milk 1 cup
- 3 large egg yolks
- 50 grams coffee sugar 1/4 cup
To make the coffee sugar
- Grind the coffee beans in a coffee grinder. Combine the coffee grinds with the sugar and stir well to mix. Divide the mixture: you will need 50 grams of this coffee sugar for the crème anglaise, the rest (~70 grams) is for the bread pudding).
To make the bread pudding
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Butter a small 8x7 Pyrex baking dish (or an ovenproof dish).
- Butter one side of each slice of bread then sprinkle generously with coffee sugar, patting it into the butter as you go. Don't worry if you have a few tablespoons leftover.
- Cut and fit 5 slices of the bread in the bottom of the pan in a single layer, then sprinkle with some of the berries (~half). Cut the remaining slices in half diagonally, then arrange them upwards on top of the first layer of the bread so the corners are sticking up.
- Tuck the rest of the berries between the slices. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, milk and vanilla. Then drizzle this evenly over the bread slices. If you have any leftover butter or coffee sugar, sprinkle it over top.
- Bake the bread pudding for about 45 minutes, until the custard is set.
- Serve warm.
To make the coffee crème anglaise
- Have a strainer set over a bowl in an ice bath ready.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the yolks with half the coffee sugar until the yolks have lightened in color. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, heat the milk with the rest of the coffee sugar.
- When the milk is steamy, pour it over the yolks and whisk to temper the eggs.
- Transfer the mixture back to the saucepan and continue heating on medium–low, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for about 10 minutes until the mixture coats the back of the spoon.
- Strain the mixture into the bowl over the ice bath and stir every 10 minutes to chill completely.
For this recipe, I used Parachute coffee
Parachute Coffee sent me their coffee bean delivery box to try out this month. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that allow me to create new recipes for Kitchen Heals Soul.