You’ll be so dang pleased with yourself when you make this de-freakin’-licious recipe, so just get on it right now: It’s time to introduce your mouth to the fantasy-revelation of bread pudding blondies with a homemade whisky-cream sauce with toasted pecans. (The whisky is optional, but highly recommended.)
I’m salivating as I type this. Seriously.
The amazing thing is that it all starts with a charmingly affordable mini-box of Jiffy brand yellow cake mix! Yep, that’s what I said. It’s probably less than a buck at your local market. Ain’t it cute?
INGREDIENTS – BLONDIES
- 8-9 cups stale bread, cut into cubes (I bought a 24-ounce sourdough loaf and used 3/4 of it)
- 1 small box Jiffy yellow cake mix (9 ounces, or about 1 1/2 cups)
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup oil
- 1 Tbsp rum flavor or rum extract
- 3 1/2 cups milk
- 3/4 cup fresh, soft raisins
INGREDIENTS – CREAM SAUCE
- 1 1/2 cups (12 oz.) Half & Half (or whipping cream, if you want it richer)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2-3 Tbsp corn starch
- 2-3 ounces whisky (or you can substitute 1 Tbsp rum extract + 1 tsp vanilla)
- 2 Tbsp butter or margarine
- 3/4 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
Cut your stale bread into about 1-inch cubes until you have about 8-9 cups. (If your bread isn’t stale, cut into cubes and expose them to air for a few hours. Stale bread does a better job of soaking up your golden delicious batter.)
In a large mixing bowl, blend together the dry cake mix with the ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg. I like to use a fresh nutmeg and grate it myself; it makes my kitchen smell so good!
Add the eggs, oil, rum extract, and milk into the mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat for about 2 minutes on medium. This is your blondie batter.
Grease the bottom and sides of a 9×13-inch baking pan. Put all your bread cubes into the pan and then pour all of the blondie batter over top, evenly distributing the batter so the bread will soak it up, leaving no overly dry bread cubes.
While the bread is soaking, sprinkle the top with raisins. It’s looking good, isn’t it?
Bake at 350 F for about 25-30 minutes. To test for doneness, try the toothpick test. Insert the toothpick into the center and look at how wet or dry the toothpick looks. If it’s glossy wet, it needs more time. If some small, moist pieces cling to the toothpick, the blondies are done (see photo below).
The goal is to pull the blondies from the oven before the toothpick comes out completely clean and dry, which would indicate over-baking. (But this recipe has cream sauce, so if you overbake it, you’re still OK; you can pile on the cream sauce and still call it perfectly delicious!) Set the blondies aside and let them cool.
Now it’s time to make the cream sauce. Start by setting aside 1/4 cup of half & half into a small bowl. Pour the remaining 1 1/4 cups of half & half into a medium saucepan.
Add sugar to the saucepan. Mix and cook over medium heat just until it bubbles, stirring occasionally.
While waiting for the sugar and cream to boil, mix 2 T of cornstarch into the 1/4 cup of half & half that you set aside in the bowl. Mix together; this is called a slurry.
When the half & half reaches a light boil, pour in the cornstarch mixture and keep cooking on medium heat.
In a minute or two, your cream sauce will be nice and thick. Now add the whisky (or rum extract + vanilla), the butter, and the toasted/chopped pecans. Mix it all together.
If it’s too thick, you can add a few teaspoons of milk, water, or whisky to thin it out.
If it’s too thin for your preference, mix up another slurry of cornstarch-plus-liquid in a one-to-three ratio. You can use 1 Tbsp of cornstarch plus 3 Tbsp of water, or cornstarch plus milk, or cornstarch plus whisky, or cornstarch plus half & half. Add the slurry to the saucepan and cook on medium for another minute or two until it thickens up. (Never add powdered cornstarch by itself; it can create sticky lumps.)
To serve, cut a piece of bread pudding and heat it in the microwave for 20 seconds. Generously dollop some of that rich, smoky, warm cream sauce right on top. You might even put the cream sauce into a gravy boat and let your guests top their own! So decadent! Store leftover blondies and cream sauce in the refrigerator.
Oh, people. I’m swooning for this guest-worthy recipe. Just look at that photo. How can anyone resist the beauty and the crave-ability of this Bread Pudding Blondie with Whisky-Cream Sauce?