Monday, March 16, 2015

Mushroom, Leek & Gruyere Savory Bread Pudding

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Need a good side dish for almost any meat or seafood main course?  Try this one!  It’s amazing and really easy, and so delicious.

7 cups (1/2 -inch-diced) bread cubes from a rustic country loaf
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
5 ounces pancetta, (diced)
4 cups sliced leeks, white and light green parts (4 leeks)
2 pounds mushrooms, (sliced)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves
½ cup sherry
½ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
5 eggs
1 ½ cups heavy cream
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups grated Gruyere cheese (6 ounces), divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

COOKING MUSIC SELECTION: Ultra Lounge - Bossanova Ville

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread the bread cubes on a sheet pan and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly toasted. Set aside.

Heat the oil and butter in a large (14-inch) cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook for 5 minutes, until starting to brown. Stir in the leeks and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until the leeks are tender. Stir in the mushrooms, tarragon, sherry, 1 tablespoon salt and pepper and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until most of the liquid evaporates, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat, stir in the parsley.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, cream, chicken stock and 1 cup of the Gruyere. Add the bread cubes and mushroom mixture, stirring well to combine. Set aside at room temperature for 1 hour to allow the bread to absorb the liquid. Stir well and pour back into the cast iron skillet. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup Gruyere and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the top is browned and the custard is set. Serve hot and enjoy!

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