2000s Recipes + Menus

Apple Budino

  • Active time:20 min
  • Start to finish:1 hr
September 2009
This budino (“pudding” in Italian) is a refined take on bread pudding. Cubes of buttery croissants suspended in a rich custard hide a layer of caramelized apples scented with cinnamon. It is adapted from a recipe by Walter Manzke, who served it when he was the chef at Bouchée in Carmel, California.
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick, broken into thirds
  • 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 3 croissants, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (5 cups)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Accompaniment:

    cinnamon or vanilla ice cream
  • Put a rack in middle of oven and preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Melt butter in a 10-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat. Add apples and cinnamon stick and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until apples are pale golden, about 3 minutes. Add brown sugar and cook, stirring, until sugar is dissolved and apples are slightly caramelized, about 2 minutes. Add apple juice and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until apples are tender and juice has evaporated, 3 to 4 minutes. Discard cinnamon stick.
  • Transfer apples to an ungreased 9-inch square baking dish or other 2 1/2-quart shallow baking dish, spreading them evenly. Scatter croissant cubes evenly over apples.
  • Whisk together cream, eggs, and 1/4 cup sugar in a bowl and pour mixture evenly over croissant cubes, pressing them down slightly to moisten them. Sprinkle top evenly with remaining tablespoon sugar.
  • Bake, uncovered, until custard is set and top is lightly browned, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer baking dish to a rack to cool for 10 minutes.
  • Serve warm with ice cream.
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