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Making bread pudding for Thanksgiving—or, even better, tonight? You don’t need a recipe to whip up this comfort-food classic. Just follow these simple steps for the sweet or savory bread pudding of your dreams:
1. Whisk 4 large eggs with 1/2–1 cup sugar (for sweet bread pudding only), then whisk in 2–4 cups liquid, such as milk, cream, half-and-half, non-dairy milk, or vegetable broth. (Note: the more liquid you use, the less firm the custard will be.)
2. Stir in 4–6 cups bread cubes, and let soak 15 to 20 minutes, pressing bread into liquid occasionally. Fold in 2–4 cups fruit, nuts, or vegetables—whatever you want to add to the recipe—and season with fresh or dried herbs, spices, and/or extracts.
3. Transfer mixture to 9-inch square baking dish, and bake 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until set in middle and lightly puffed. Voila!
Need flavor combination inspiration? Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Savory Bread Pudding with Artichokes and Two Cheeses (pictured): who says bread pudding needs to be sweet?
Pumpkin-Apple Bread Pudding with Cranberry Streusel: an alternative to pumpkin pie.
Chocolate-Cherry Bread Pudding: decadent, custardy, and sophisticated yet homey.
Mango-Coconut Bread Pudding: a vegan favorite that works great for brunch or dessert.