chocolate bread pudding with white chocolate sherbet
recipe by: lynne 
categories: pudding 
1/2   recipe brioche or 1/2 large bakery challah
  about 8 ounces bread)
2 cup  half-and-half
2 cup  heavy cream
1 pinch  salt
1   vanilla bean, split lengthwise
6 oz.  semisweet chocolate, chopped
6   eggs
1 cup  granulated sugar
1 cup  dried cherries
  confectioners sugar
  white chocolate sherbet:
3 oz.  white chocolate
1/4 cup  sugar
1-1/2 cup  milk
3/4 cup  water
1/2   vanilla bean, split
preheat the oven to 350 degrees f. 
cut the crusts off the bread and cut into 1-inch cubes. 
you should have about 3 1/2 cups of cubes. arrange on a 
baking sheet and toast in the oven until light golden 
brown, about 10 minutes. watch carefully to make sure 
they do not brown too much; set aside to cool. leave 
the oven on. 
in a saucepan, heat the half-and-half, cream, salt, and 
vanilla bean over medium heat, stirring occasionally to 
make sure the mixture doesn't burn or stick to the bottom 
of the pan. when the cream mixture reaches a fast simmer 
(do not let it boil), turn off the heat. set aside to 
infuse 10 minutes. add the chopped chocolate and whisk 
until it melts completely. 
in a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together. 
whisking constantly, gradually add the hot cream mixture. 
strain into a large bowl to smooth the mixture and remove 
the vanilla bean. add the bread cubes and dried cherries, 
toss well, and let soak until almost all liquid is absorbed, 
about 30 minutes. fold the mixture occasionally to ensure 
even soaking. 
divide the soaked bread among 6 ungreased individual baking 
dishes or 1 large baking dish. arrange the puddings in a 
hot water bath. bake until set and browning on top, about 
30 minutes for individual puddings and 40 to 45 minutes for 
1 large pudding. serve warm or chilled, dusted with 
confectioners' sugar and with the white chocolate sherbet. 
white chocolate sherbet: place all the ingredients in a bowl 
over hot water and whisk to melt the chocolate and until 
smooth. strain, then chill. spin according to ice cream 
maker's instructions. 
yield: 6 servings 
(ID: 76916) Mirror: Wed, May 26, 2004

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