Savory Bread Pudding

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I’m a huge fan of sweet bread puddings, filled with raisins and cinnamon galore, but in this case I was in need of dinner, had a bag of spinach that was on it’s way out, and a baguette that could knock a burglar cold. In an effort to avoid as much food waste as possible, I decided to make something a little out of the ordinary that seemed like it would be a challenge to mess up. This tasty little delight is filled with ham, cheese, and all things savory and wonderful. It’s also boy-approved (if you’re needing to please the bae), and could easily serve as a breakfast option as well.

For anyone else ever looking into options for stale bread, check out this helpful little post. Next time I may do meatballs.


Ingredients
1 large baguette, stale (roughly 1.5 ft long)
3 cups 1% milk
2 large eggs
1 cup asiago (I used a blend of asiago of parmesan)
2 cups fresh spinach, roughly chopped
2 cups ham, shredded
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp garlic powder


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To Make
Preheat oven to 375 and set aside an 8 x 8 baking sheet.

In a large mixing bowl, combine your milk and eggs, whisking until thoroughly mixed. Add in your garlic powder, salt, and pepper, continuing to mix well. Set aside your mixing bowl to cut your stale/hardened baguette into cubes. Be careful in doing so, as it’s very challenging to cut once the crust has been hardened.

Once cut, combine your bread into the mixing bowl and thoroughly mix, allowing the bread to soak up the milk. Once combined, chop your spinach and shred your ham over the cutting board. Add these ingredients to the pan mixture

Spread this mixture onto your pan. Once combined, chop your spinach and shred your ham over the cutting board. Add these ingredients to the bread mixture, as well as most of the cheese (leaving some to sprinkle on top). Once everything is fully incorporated and settled into the pan, add the remaining cheese on top then place into the oven for 45 minutes.

When fully cooked, the inside should be a little more gooey than cake, and the top golden brown.


 

 

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Mushroom Asparagus Risotto

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My appreciation for mushrooms has only recently developed. In fact, I think this is the first time I’ve ever cooked with them. For the longest time I would avoid them, mainly because their texture just didn’t do it for me. However, I’ve recently learned that if they’re covered in enough butter, garlic, and wine, I’m a very happy camper. Last week I was craving something rich and delicious, and this dish hit just the spot.

The original recipe I made (adapted from Pinch of Yum) yielded wayyy more servings than I needed — about eight total. Considering I’m generally over a meal after about three servings, eight was definitely over kill. I ended up making a whole lot of risotto cakes to keep my palette interested (to make — form little patties, dip in egg wash, cover in panko, pan fry, and serve with a side of Greek yogurt). A very tasty interpretation, if I must say!

 

INGREDIENTS
(makes about 4 servings)

3/4 cups arborio rice, uncooked
1/4 lb of bacon
2 cups vegetable broth
1/4 cup white wine
2 cups cremini mushrooms, choppped
2 cups asparagus, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 medium Spanish onion
2 tbsp butter
salt & pepper to taste
parmesan for garnish

TO MAKE
In a large skillet, cook your bacon over medium-low heat. Once crispy, allow the grease to settle on a plate with a paper towel. After it has cooled, chop roughly and set to the side to prepare the rice.

On medium-low heat, melt the butter to a nice sizzle. Add your garlic, onion, rice, and a splash of the wine. Allow to toast slightly before adding the rest of your wine and vegetables. Cook your vegetables down slightly before adding 1/4 of your broth.

The next few steps are all about watching your rice. Once it has soaked up the liquids, add another 1/4 of your broth. Repeat this step twice more until all of your broth has been added. This is should take about 20 minutes. At this point add in your bacon, a dash of salt and pepper, and mix well.

By now your rice is cooked and ready to serve. Top it off with some grated parm and dive in.

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