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Marsala-laced Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding

From Italian Cooking and Living, June/July 2001

Who says Italians don't make bread pudding? This farmhouse dessert is studded with bits of chocolate and fragrant with lemon zest. The Marsala and rum give it a devilishly sophisticated character, but can be omitted if you are serving it to children.

  • 10 ounces country bread, crusts removed, cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 1/4 cup sweet Marsala
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed, plus extra for greasing the pan
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 400. Spread the bread on a baking sheet; sprinkle with the rum and Marsala. Let rest 5 minutes. Meanwhile, beat the eggs with the milk, cream, 1/2 cup of the sugar, and the lemon zest in a large bowl. Add three-quarters of the butter and all the chocolate chips. Fold the bread cubes into the egg mixture, and spoon into a buttered 13" x 9" mold. Dot the top with the remaining butter and sprinkle with the remaining sugar. Place the mold in a roasting pan filled halfway with warm water and bake for 40 minutes. Cool on a rack and unmold onto a serving plate. Serve at room temperature. Serves 8



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