For some reason, there's always a push around this time of year to discover alternatives for the typical Thanksgiving pumpkin pie.
I think these folks are nuts. I love pumpkin pie. It's a turkey day staple. But that doesn't prevent me from wanting other pumpkin-based desserts around this time of year.
So with my trusty can-o-pumpkin and smiling sidekick - off to the kitchen!
I'm going to make this in a pie plate, because I think it's prettier than a plain glass baking dish. You can use an 8x8, 9x9, or a deep dish pie plate. Up to you.
Pieces of stale bread in the pie plate.
Milk, half & half, sugar, and salt - in a pot on medium low heat. Just dissolving the sugar.
Off the heat - add pumpkin to help cool. Then more cooling.
Eggs and spices go in a large bowl.
Whisk all those liquids together.
Pour into bread. Let soak.
Eat warm, with ice cream. Yum! Or the next day, cold out of the fridge after The Bean finally goes down for a nap....
My. That went quickly! Perhaps there is something to this pumpkin pie alternative stuff.
Pumpkin Bread Pudding
1 loaf stale bread (French or Italian - a fluffy white bread with a good crust)
1 c. half & half
1 1/2 c. milk
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 c. canned pumpkin
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or spice mix listed below)
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8x8 square dish or a deep pie dish. Cut the bread into bite size pieces and mound in baking dish.
In a medium saucepan, heat the milk, half and half, sugar and salt until the sugar is dissolved (don't let the mixture come near a boil! this will be quick). Remove from heat and whisk in pumpkin. Allow to cool. In a large bowl, crack the 5 eggs. Add in the spice and gently whisk in the cooled milk & pumpkin mixture.
Pour the custard over the bread cubes, allowing it to soak in well. Because I had left my bread cubes out overnight and they were super stale, I had to pour in half the mix, then come back 2 hrs later once the bread had absorbed it all and pour in the rest. If your bread is less stale, you might only have to wait 10-20 minutes or so.
Bake for 35-40 minutes, until slightly puffed up and still jiggly in the middle. Serve with ice cream.
So I don't have "Pumpkin Pie Spice" - but I've got everything that goes in it!
Pumpkin Pie Spice Cheat
Makes 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg