Holiday Side Dish: Savory Bread Pudding with Wild Mushrooms and Leeks Recipe


1 9-ounce loaf of white bread, crusts removed, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
2 cups vegetable stock
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
4 medium leeks
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound assorted mushrooms (e.g., oysters, chanterelles, shiitakes), sliced 1/4-inch thick
1/2 pound cremini or button mushrooms, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup dry sherry

4 cups heavy cream
6 large eggs
1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
2 Tablespoons thyme leaves, finely chopped

1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped


Toast the Bread: Preheat oven to 325°F. Toast the cubed bread for 10-15 minutes until dried through.

Prepare pan: Lightly butter a 3-quart baking dish or 12 5-oz. ramekins.

Prepare Dried Mushrooms: Heat the vegetable stock in small saucepan. Turn off the heat and add the mushrooms. Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in veggie stock until softened, about 30 minutes. Drain the mushrooms through a fine strainer into a saucepan. Finely chop the mushrooms, discarding any tough bits.

Custard, Step One: Add the cream to the saucepan with the strained porcini soaking liquid and reduce over medium-high heat by 1/2. Remove from heat and set aside.

Prep the Leeks: Cut off the tough green tops of the leeks and the root tentacles, using only the white and light green parts, and leaving the root intact. Clean the leeks thoroughly by cutting them in half lengthwise, through the root and up the center. Lay each half flat and slice in the center along the length of the leek but this time not through the root. Fan the leek halves under running water with the root pointed up. Drain well. Slice the leeks crosswise into 1/2-inch lengths, discarding the root.

Saute the Vegetables: Melt the two Tablespoons of butter in a large sauté pan. Add the chopped leeks, salt and pepper, and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter along with the assorted mushrooms and chopped porcini. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms have released their liquid. Add the wine and sherry and cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms begin to brown, about 10 minutes.

Custard, Step Two: In a bowl, whisk the eggs with the reduced cream/stock mixture. Add 1 cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, the thyme and 2 teaspoons of salt; blend well.

Assemble the Bread Pudding: Toss the toasted bread with the custard. Then gently stir in the vegetable mixture. Put mixture into prepared pan. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano. Bake for 35 minutes or until the custard is set and the top is brown. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes before serving. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley and serve.

Recipe created by Parties That Cook®


Serves 10