Pumpkin Bread Pudding
(Adapted from Gourmet Magazine / Gourmet Today cookbook)
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup canned fresh or solid pack pumpkin (I loved it with the fresh!)
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs plus 1 yolk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
Pinch of ground cloves
5 cups cubed (1-inch) day-old brioche (about 1 loaf) or baguette or crusty bread (I prefer my homemade brioche)
3/4 stick unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.
Whisk together cream, pumpkin, milk, sugar, eggs, yolk, salt, and spices in a bowl.
Cut brioche loaf into 1 inch thick slices. Slice the slices in thirds horizontally and in fourths horizontally. Toss bread cubes with butter in another bowl, then add pumpkin mixture and toss to coat. Transfer to an ungreased 8-inch square baking dish. Sprinkle the pecans over the top, followed by the brown sugar.
Bake until custard is set, 25 to 30 minutes. The custard in the middle should be "just" set. It will continue to "bake" after it is taken out of the oven. Take care not to overcook it or the edges will be dry.
Serve warm or chilled. May be made ahead of time and reheated.