Wild Mushroom Bread Pudding

2 starches – 1 vegetable – 1 protein

This week’s recipe was not supposed to be published this week. It has been in my “try this out” file for a very long time, and I just never got around to trying it out. I expected it to be tasty, but not anything special. So, fast-forward something like a YEAR AND A HALF, when I decide to finally add this to my dinner menu for the week. I prepared the pudding the night before I intended to eat it, transferred it into individual baking dishes, and put it in the fridge. When I woke up the next morning and opened the fridge, I decided that it would make a tasty breakfast and popped it in the oven for my husband and I.

About halfway through eating it, I said, “Is it just me, or is this really, really good?” To which he responded, “This is really, really, really good.” So just as I was too impatient to save this delicious concoction for dinner, I was also too impatient to queue it for publishing at a later date. You must all enjoy this NOW.

Here are few little suggestions for this savory bread pudding:

  • The finished pudding resembles a giant muffin, making it suitable for breakfast or a vegetarian lunch or dinner entrée. But, you can also bake this in half portions (maybe even thirds) in a muffin tin, making it a wonderful side dish for a chicken or beef entrée (it would be so yummy as a muffin with the recent creamy chicken and mushroom soup recipe).
  • Before eating, I drizzled my pudding with a half-tablespoon of margarine. It was a really nice touch that added a nice buttery flavor.
  • While a full portion has just one serving of vegetable, feel free to add more, especially since the mushrooms collapse so much when cooked. I thought that green onions or roasted red pepper would have been nice additions. And if you don’t like mushrooms, skip them entirely and use the onions and peppers by themselves.
  • The recipe calls for mixed wild mushrooms, but on the day I went to the store all they had was button mushrooms (sad face), but it was still fantastic. Don’t let mushroom variety hold you back, use whatever you like or can find at the store.
  • I thoroughly enjoyed the thyme in this, but next time I will try other woody herbs, such as rosemary.
  • You can pre-bake a bunch of these and freeze them after they are cooked for a great grab-and-go meal (thaw and warm in the microwave).

So, as it turns out, something special was indeed hiding in my recipe-testing file, so I hope you don’t wait a year like I did to try it out. This will be a regular in my kitchen, and maybe yours, too.

–Kim K.

Ingredients 

  • 2 C. mixed fresh wild mushrooms such as chanterelle, cremini, oyster, trimmed and washed
  • 1/2 tsp. Morton® Lite Salt, divided
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper, divided
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 C. skim milk
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. minced onion
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme (can use 1 teaspoon fresh)
  • 4 slices on-plan bread (whole wheat or rye, dry or stale is good)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Slice mushrooms lengthwise. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushroom slices and let cook without disturbing for 2-3 minutes, or until they start to brown. Toss and add half of salt and pepper. Cook until any liquid given off by the mushrooms has evaporated, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, combine eggs, milk, and remaining salt and pepper along with garlic powder, minced onion and thyme. Whisk well.

Slice bread into cubes about 1/2 inch. Add to egg mixture along with mushrooms. Stir to combine and press bread into egg mixture to help absorption. Let stand 10 minutes for bread to absorb some of egg mixture.

NOTE: At this point, mixture can be covered in plastic wrap and kept in refrigerator overnight. Before cooking, allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes.

Coat two 16-ounce baking dishes with zero-calorie cooking spray. Divide bread mixture between dishes and bake in preheated oven for 30 to 45 minutes, or until firm (no liquid should seep up when you press down on the middle). Drizzle with a teaspoon of melted margarine or olive oil, if desired.

Makes 2 servings