My mother taught me “you shall waste not”, and this is a great way to use up any leftover bread that’s going a little stale. It is such a classic dessert that almost every nation in Europe claims to have invented it! In France, it is called pain perdu; in Switzerland, it is brotauflauf; in Germany, it is ofenschlupfer… Regardless of whoever got there first, we all agree that it is comfort food at its best.
best vanilla extract or vanilla syrup
organic/free-range medium eggs
unsalted butter, diced, plus extra to grease
sultanas, soaked in sugar syrup for 30 minutes
bread or brioche
icing sugar for dusting
In a saucepan, bring the cream, milk and vanilla to the boil, then take off the heat and let stand for a minute.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, sugar and salt together, then whisk in the hot creamy milk. Set aside.
Butter the baking dish, pour in a layer of custard and scatter over the sultanas.
Cut the bread or brioche into 5mm thick slices. Dip into the pan of warm custard to soak, then layer in the baking dish, overlapping the slices and building up layers to fill the dish.
Let stand for 20 minutes or so to allow the bread to fully absorb the liquid.
Reserve the rest of the custard.
Preheat the oven to 170°C/Gas 3.
Top up the dish with the remaining custard and dot the butter on top of the pudding.
Stand on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 30–35 minutes until the custard is lightly set.
Preheat the grill to high.
Dust the surface of the pudding with icing sugar twice to get a good covering, and then place under the hot grill for a few minutes to glaze.
Add a final sprinkling of icing sugar before serving.
This recipe is adapted from the book Kitchen Secrets
Raymond’s love of delicious food is lifelong. Years of experience have given him a rich store of knowledge and the skill to create fantastic dishes that work time after time. With a range of achievable and inspirational recipes for cooks of all abilities - and useful tips throughout - this book brings Gallic passion and precision into the home kitchen.