Posts Tagged 'famous dave’s'

Pipe Dream #57: To Maintain a Blog, Among Other Things – Caramel Praline Sauce

I have to be honest with you. In an attempt to spread out my posts throughout the summer, I separated two inseparable recipes. Namely, this caramel praline sauce and yesterday’s succulent bread pudding. In trying to be smart about time management, I have purposely sacrificed your potential satisfaction in yesterday’s recipe.

In fact, I may have even compromised my future readership. What if some unwitting soul read yesterday’s post, decided they couldn’t live another 24 hours without that pudding and went ahead and made it without today’s recipe? Although they would surely be happy with the results of the recipe, their subconscious would doubtlessly feel something lacking. Their internal monologue would progress as such:

“Man, that bread pudding was awesome. Except, it could have been better. I don’t know how, but I feel as though something was missing. What the heck, Lauren? How did you miss this? I can’t trust any of your recipes again because you are purposely leading me away from the purest forms of happiness. See ya.”

And then no one would read my blog.

I guess I’m taking chances, posting these two recipes separately. Like a risk-taker. Gosh, I wish I could say I was cool enough to be a risk-taker.

And now for a completely random side note of Lauren philosophy. To anyone who says they like change: 1) I am jealous of you. 2) I don’t understand. 3) In my heart, I don’t actually believe that you are telling the truth. No one likes change, really.

Hokay. This recipe requires making caramel, something at which I have gotten better, as evidenced by things like Homemade Twix Bars and Salted Caramel Brownies, a recipe which I may or may not post due to the lack of sufficient picture-age. This caramel was practically fun. I was more confidenced this time, despite a frantic scramble to find a candy thermometer that I knew was somewhere in the drawer, but that I couldn’t find for the life of me. Meanwhile, my caramel was getting bubblier and bubblier…

One of my mom’s many good qualities is that she can find things that other people I can’t. When I’m home, I usually lose shoes in the closet and spices in the cupboard. I’ll spend ten minutes looking for whatever I’m missing, I mean, really looking. Then I’ll give up, ask her to come find it, and she will spot it in approximately .63 seconds. Because the thing that I am looking for is right in front of my face. Story of my life.

If you have any plans to make yesterday’s bread pudding (and I will take the liberty of saying that you should), do NOT leave out this sauce. Do not. It is essential.

This post has been so random,


Caramel Praline Sauce for Bread Pudding

Adapted from

1 cups unsalted butter, cubed

3/4 cup chopped pecans

1 1/2 lbs light brown sugar

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 1/4 cups sour cream

3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract

Heat 1/2 cup of the butter in a large saucepan until melted. Add the pecans and mix well. Bring to a boil. Cook until the pecans begin to change color. This mixture will foam over, so use a large saucepan. Add the remaining 1 cup of butter and mix well. This will cool the pecan mixture and stop the cooking process. Remove from heat.

Combine brown sugar, whipping cream and cinnamon in a separate saucepan and mix well. Cook over low heat until blended, stirring constantly; increase heat. Cook to 230 degrees on a candy thermometer.

Stir in pecan mixture. Add sour cream and vanilla and mix well. Remove from heat.

Yield: 2 cups (I halved the original recipe and it still made a ton. No one complained. Pretty sure we had it the next day on ice cream.)

Pipe Dream #56: To Be Right – Famous Dave’s Bread Pudding

My father had been insinuatingly asking me to make this recipe for months. At first I was skeptical. Here is my thought progression:

Bread pudding? Sounds like a carb-fest to me.

Also, it sounds like it might be kind of English and bland.

But Dad really wants me to make it.

Where are you going to get a half loaf of French bread?

But seriously, when have you ever been afraid of a carb-fest? You make cupcakes on a weekly basis.

Yeah, but breads carbs seem eviler than frosting carbs.

Hey look! Old French bread that nobody is going to eat!

Ok, whatever. I’ll do it.

So we whiskED up some cream and eggs. I don’t even want to tell you how much cream is in this, but I guess you’ll see at the end of this post. Please do not let it deter you. You will not know regret after tasting this.

It turns out that in this case, my father was quite right about this bread pudding. It was not bland or boring. But it was a carb-fest. In my ongoing quest to be right, I can at least cling to that. It was a carb-FEST. Thought: you could eat this right before a marathon. That would be perfect.

For some reason, I had to bake this longer than the recipe called for. It seemed a bit too jiggly at first. I just kept a close eye on it and let it go for 10 minute intervals until it was less jiggly. Sorry I’m not being more specific. Blame it on my ISFJ personality or something.

And if we’re talking about my problems now, might as well hit a few more. The jiggliness could be the result of not using the water bath called for in the recipe. Sorry, I just don’t have a pan big enough to hold a 9×13 and a bunch of water. And notice the weird cinnamon crusty dark stuff? I could have avoided that if I had mixed the cinnamon with the sugar before adding it to the wet ingredients. Please learn from my mistakes.

Anyway, in the end, everything turned out just fine. It was a wonderful bread pudding, and someday I will make it again.  I would be interested to try it with different fruits. I can take or leave raisins. Let me know if you try it with something different, eh?

Also, notice the sinful looking sauce draping the calorie-laden crags of the pudding? That recipe is coming next, so stay tuned. This recipe is not complete without it. I’m so adamant on that point.

Best of luck,


Famous Dave’s Bread Pudding

Adapted from

butter (as needed)

1/2 – 3/4 cup golden raisins, to taste

1/2 loaf French bread or egg bread

1 1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

8 eggs, beaten

4 cups milk

2 cups heavy whipping cream

1/4 cup vanilla extract

pan spray

hot water

Heavily butter 13”X9” pan with softened butter

Sprinkle 1/2 cup golden raisins on bottom of each pan

Remove crusts from bread slices and break into 1”-2” chunks


Evenly distribute crusts from loaf on top of raisins and sprinkle 1/2 of the golden raisins on top of bread crusts. Tear bread middles into 1”-2” chunks and evenly distribute on top of crusts.

Separately blend sugar and cinnamon together in a large mixing bowl with a wire whip (like I didn’t). Crack eggs into bowl with cinnamon sugar; whisk eggs to blend. Add milk, cream, and vanilla to egg mixture and blend with wire whip.

Pour custard mixture into pan of bread; use all liquid even though it will look like your bread is drowning. Trust meh. Press any visible crusts or raisins down into custard. Spray sheet of foil with pan spray and loosely cover bread pudding with foil.

Place covered bread pudding in 4” roasting pan and add water to reach halfway up side of the baking dish. Place in 325 degree oven and bake covered for one hour; remove foil and bake another 20-30 minutes (or longer). Remove bread pudding from oven and cool on wire rack for 60 minutes. The pudding will continue to cook as it cools.

Serve warm with praline sauce (to come!) and whipped cream and/or ice cream.

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