With yet another heap of Meyer lemons staring me down, I decided to highlight their flavor in a tangy and lightly sweet bread pudding. Juicy blueberries and the mild, buttery flavors of fresh Meyer lemon lend complexity to this classic comfort food. Airy, creamy, and lightly sweet, this is a great make-ahead option for weekday desserts, or as the finish to a casual dinner party.
Incredibly versatile, bread pudding can be made ahead of time and baked just before dinner, or it can be baked in the morning and eaten in the afternoon. Not to mention bread pudding is infinitely adaptable — just throw in a big handful of sliced fruit or berries, add some cream, yogurt, or buttermilk, and maybe a few herbs, and you have a seriously delicious dessert in no time. Consider bread pudding a rich and creamy blank slate. To make the bread pudding your own, consider adding citrus, spice, ginger, fruit, or herbs.
Meyer Lemon Bread Pudding with Blueberries (adapted from Food for My Family)
1 large loaf of day-old challah
3 cups half and half or whole milk
zest of 2 Meyer lemons, plus 1/4 cup fresh squeezed juice
1/2 cup sugar (up to 3/4 cup for a sweeter pudding)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
Cut bread into 1″ cubes.
Grease a large 9 x 13″ baking dish
In a large bowl, lightly beat the eggs and then whisk in the half and half, lemon zest and juice, sugar and salt. Finally, add the vanilla.
Fold the bread cubes, and then the blueberries into the egg mixture.
Spoon into the baking dish, cover, and chill for at least an hour, but preferably overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Bake bread pudding for 50 minutes, or until the edges are golden and have pulled away slightly from the dish. Cool for 30 minutes.
Cut into squares and serve with fresh blueberries and a dollop of fresh ricotta.
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