In this recipe Geoff Jansz combines the deliciously tart, fruity flavours of rhubarb with a traditional bread pudding.
8 stalks rhubarb, trimmed and chopped
1 cup sugar
juice and zest of 1 orange
8 firm pears, cored, peeled and chopped
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 loaf day old bread, crusts removed
Combine the orange juice, orange zest, rhubarb and half the sugar in a cooking pot. Cook over medium heat for 5-10 minutes, until softened. (Tip: use a *zester to remove rind from orange; if you don’t have a zester, a grater will do.)Add the chopped pears and continue to cook until softened (about 3 minutes).To make the pudding mixture: put the eggs, milk, cream, spice and the rest of the sugar into a bowl. Whisk until the sugar dissolves.Break the bread into pieces and add to the pudding mixture. (Tip: stale bread is best as it absorbs the liquid and flavours much better than fresh bread). Combine well.Pour the rhubarb and pear mixture into an ovenproof dish, spreading evenly. Pour the pudding mixture evenly over the top.Place the dish on the middle shelf of a preheated oven (150°C). Check with a skewer after 45 minutes. The pudding is ready when it is spongy and firm and no mixture sticks to the skewer. (Note: cooking time will vary according to the depth of the dish.) Serve with a dollop of cream.
* Zesters are available from kitchenware or department stores, and cost around $7.