Parmesan-Leek Bread Pudding

INGREDIENTS:

3 Tbsps. butter
3 leeks\raw, white part only, sliced and washed
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup light cream or half-and-half
4 eggs
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
1 loaf Italian bread, torn into 1 inch pieces

DIRECTIONS:

In a sauté pan over medium heat, gently soften the leeks in butter. After the leeks are tender, remove from heat. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl, combine milk, half-and-half, eggs, seasonings, and cheese. Stir in bread and leeks. Pour mixture into a large baking dish and bake for 35-45 minutes.

Umm Ali

INGREDIENTS:

1 (17.25 ounce) package frozen puff pastry, thawed
5 cups milk
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/4 cup chopped pistachio nuts
1/4 cup sweetened, flaked coconut

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Unroll the puff pastry sheets, and place flat on a baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until puffed and golden brown.
Break the puff pastry into pieces, and place in a large bowl. Add the raisins, almonds, pine nuts, pistachios, and coconut, and toss to distribute. Pour into a 9×13 inch glass baking dish, and spread evenly.
Pour the milk into a saucepan, and stir in the sugar and vanilla. Heat until hot but not quite boiling. Pour over the mixture in the baking dish.
Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Turn the oven to broil, and broil for 2 minutes to brown the top. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes. Serve warm.

New Orleans Bread Pudding With Lemon Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

3 lg. eggs
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 tsp. cinnamon and nutmeg
1/4 c. butter, melted
2 c. milk
1/2 c. raisins
1/2 c. coarsely chopped nuts
5 c. very stale French or Italian bread cubes

DIRECTIONS:

Beat eggs on high speed until extremely frothy, about 3 minutes. Add sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla, and butter. Beat on high until well blended. Beat in milk; add raisins and pecans.

Place bread cubes in bottom of greased casserole dish. Pour egg mix over bread and mix until bread is soaked. Let sit about 45 minutes. Place casserole in 350 degree oven.

Immediately lower heat to 300 degrees and bake 30 minutes or until pudding is brown and puffy. To serve, put 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon sauce over each serving. Serves 8.

LEMON SAUCE:

Mix juice of 1 lemon with 1/2 cup water, 1/4 cup sugar, and grated lemon rind. Bring to a boil; stir in 2 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 1/2 cup water and 1 teaspoon vanilla.