Have you ever had one of those days when you just needed caramel, croissants, and rum in the morning? Don’t we all just have days like that? When only sugar, booze, and French boulangerie, will help?
Well, if you are better able to manage your feelings, going out for a run or finding peace in your yoga class instead of calories in your pantry, then absolutely more power to you. I wish I were that virtuous and disciplined. But, just like the lady from where this recipe originated, when I feel up against it, it is carbs I crave. And I have no qualms indulging myself.
It’s been quite a hectic past two weeks. Work has been a wringer, the nanny was on holidays (yes, I have a nanny…I need help to balance family, home, work, friends, and me…and I am fully not opposed to procuring this help in any way I can or can afford to!)
Another thing I do when I am stressed, which is actually directly related to this dish, is watch old Nigella Lawson videos on Youtube before I go to sleep. Don’t judge! I know we aren’t supposed to be taking our gadgets into bed with us, and I’ve promised myself time and time again only books at bed, but when the day has been a particularly tough one, nothing sets me right like listening to her gorgeous voice talk about food and life and indulgence and not having enough time to brush her hair. She just makes life seem beautiful in her very perfect imperfectness. Or maybe I’m the only fool that sees that. But fool or no, after watching her putter around and put together a meal, I close my eyes with a contented sigh, ready to face the day to come.
This recipe comes from one such video.
Caramel Croissant Pudding
(adapted very slightly from Nigella Lawson)
- 2-3 stale croissants (depending on the size of the croissant)
- 100 grams sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 125 ml cream
- 125 ml full fat milk
- 1-2 tablespoons rum (depending on how boozy you want it to taste, 2 tablespoons will give you a good kick)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- Tear the croissants into pieces and put it in a small gratin or baking dish of about 2 cups capacity.
- Put the sugar and water in a saucepan and swirl around to start dissolving. Place this on a hob over medium high heat. Caramelize the sugar by letting this bubble away, without stirring, until it turns a deep amber color. This should take about 3-5 minutes. Caramel can go from bronze to burnt in seconds so do be vigilant about watching it.
- Turn the heat low and add the cream, whisking as you do, being careful of the spluttering. Keep whisking and add the milk and rum. Take off the heat and add a little of the caramel to your eggs whisking it in. Add this mixture back into your saucepan, continuing to whisk.
- Pour, what is now essentially a caramel custard, over your waiting croissants. You can leave this to steep for 10 minutes if your croissants are especially stale.
- Place in a pre-heated 350F over for 20 minutes and then enjoy with abandonment!
The video of Nigella making this caramel croissant pudding is one of my favorites. I’ve probably watched it a million times. It’s perfect before bed because it is set at night…when she comes home from one totally sophisticated drinks part or other, looking as lovely as usual, dressed all in black, a bottle of Maker’s Mark in tow. She tosses her heels and jewelry aside and sets about making her post-party supper…this pudding. Everything about this video I love. The way she looks beautiful and happy and confident sans skinny figure and designer ensemble. The way she makes caramel in the late hours of the night. The way she slugs the bourbon into the mix. The way she takes the pudding with her to enjoy cozily in her bed.
It comes as no surprise then that I had to give it a go. I had two stale croissants rattling around my freezer so the timing was perfect. The only thing I changed about this recipe was using rum instead of bourbon simply because rum was what I had around. Also, pay attention to the amount of croissants you have – my croissants were a bit smaller that their heftier European counterparts so I had to add about half a croissant more than the two that was called for.
I had this for breakfast, instead of dinner, and I can certainly concur that it makes you feel spoiled and indulgent – which is something we all need and deserve to feel – all for the price of two stale croissants! Not a bad deal at all, all things considered.
It’s back to work for me now, but thankfully the holidays gave me a bit of time to catch my breath and recoup. We stayed at home, I cooked, we slept in, took naps, spent time with family and friends…the best things to do in my book. I hope your holiday was equally wonderful! And, of course, that some spoiling and indulging were on the agenda.