My Firehouse Kitchen: Firehouse Bread Pudding
Chef Joe Bonanno, TB Reporter
Chef Joe Bonanno is back with a Thanksgiving treat. As Chef Joe says, “It is so damn easy to make and SOOOO delicious, raves and drooling whenever I made it, plus it’s a homey, holiday type recipe.” He’s also included a picture of his fire family – his crew from back in the day at Engine 273 and Ladder 129 in Flushing, Queens, NY.
Welcome back to my Firehouse Kitchen!
Thanksgiving at the Firehouse! The families and friends used to feel kind of bad for our having to work on Thanksgiving. Yes, sometimes it was difficult to be away from family and friends but to be honest, sometimes not! It is a time for those close to us but often at home it can be crazy and chaotic as well and the firehouse was often quite the respite from that! A lot of firefighters would agree!!
Because we had to work and had a great kitchen, I would go all out to prepare as classic a Thanksgiving meal as possible. Other firefighters would chip in their skills with great side dishes as well. If we got lucky and timed it right – as best one could in a busy NYC firehouse – we got to eat, enjoy good company without an alarm coming in. It was a rarity but it did happen! I have attached a picture of one of the best crews I ever had the privilege to work with, the members of Engine 273 and Ladder 129 in Flushing, Queens, NY.
The recipe I am using is my best-ever dessert recipe, my “go to” recipe and as difficult as it was to please hungry firefighters, this one got 100 percent approval. May God Bless all this Thanksgiving, count your blessings of which I know you have many!
- Firehouse Bread Pudding
- Serves 6-8
- 8-10 ounces raisins
- 2-3 ounces raspberry liqueur (such as di Amore or Chambord) or brandy (The raspberry liqueur is better)
- 24 ounces day-old white bread that’s been left out to get stale or put in an oven on low-warm to dry out
- 1 quart heavy cream
- 3 eggs
- 12 ounces granulated sugar
- 1 ounce vanilla extract
- Combine raisins and liqueur in a small saucepan. Heat to just simmer, then turn off the heat, stir, cover and set aside.
- Use some of the butter to coat the inside of a 2-inch deep baking pan. Reserve the rest of the butter. (A cast-iron Dutch oven works best.)
- Tear the bread into chunks and place in a large bowl. Pour the cream over the bread and set aside until soft.
- Beat the eggs and sugar until smooth and thick. Add the vanilla, remaining melted butter, raisins and liqueur/brandy.
- Toss the egg mixture gently with the bread to blend. Pour the mixture into the baking pan or Dutch oven and bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees until brown and set, about an hour to an hour and 15 minutes.
For more from Chef Joe, go to thehealthyfirehouse.com.
Joe Bonanno | My Firehouse Kitchen | Bread Pudding | Recipes | Food |Thanksgiving | TB Reporter
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