Lemon Custard Bread Pudding with Sauce

Lemon BP (3)

This recipe is adapted from one in a favorite cookbook from the 1970s – Redbook Cookbook (1976), offered as a premium with a subscription to Redbook magazine.  This was originally a custard bread pudding recipe which I adapted by adding lemon extract and by making a favorite sauce with lemon juice and grated lemon peel.  It’s lighter than most bread pudding with a delicious custard.  Heavier bread like Italian, French or sourdough would be the best to use for this.

The pudding is baked in a deep casserole dish which has been placed in a shallow pan of hot water.

Lemon BP (2)


4 cups day-old bread cubes
3 cups milk
¼ cup butter
½ cup granulated sugar
3 eggs
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp lemon extract

Heat oven to 350.  Grease a deep 1-1/2 qt. baking dish.

Place bread cubes in a large bowl and set aside.  Heat milk in a saucepan over low heat until little bubbles form at pan edge.  Remove from heat, add butter, sugar.  Stir and pour this mixture over the  bread cubes.  Let stand for 5 minutes.

In a small bowl, beat eggs well and add salt and lemon extract.  Slowly stir tje egg mixture into the bread/milk mixture.  Pour into greased dish.  Set dish in a baking pan and add one inch of hot water to pan.  Bake for 55 minutes until set.  Let cool in dish on a rack.

LEMON SAUCE  (1-½ cups)
½ cup granulated sugar
2-¼ Tblsp. cornstarch
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup cold water
2 Tblsp. butter
½ cup lemon juice
1 tsp. grated lemon peel

In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, salt and water.  Stirring constantly, heat until mixture boils.  Remove from heat and stir in butter, lemon juice and lemon peel.  Serve warm over bread pudding.  Makes about 1-½ cups.

Refrigerate leftovers of pudding and sauce.  Bring to room temperature or heat briefly in the microwave to serve.

Lemon BP (1)


Clementine Pudding

ClemPudding (1)

It’s that time of year again when we often find a few remaining Clementines and we’re tired of eating them out of hand.  This is a good way to use Clementines and enjoy a bright, orange flavored dessert.

First, to prepare the Clementines:

Wash and dry three Clementines, remove stems and place in a microwave-safe dish.  Cover Clementines with cold water, put a lid on the dish and microwave on high for approximately 10 minutes.  Clementines should be quite soft and look something like fresh, ripe apricots.  Let cool in microwave – be careful, they get very hot.

Cut the Clementines in half and process as finely as possible in a food processor or blender (remove seeds if necessary but, yes, process both rind and flesh).



Makes about ½ cup.  Set aside.

Note:  Clementines can also be covered with water and boiled on the stove top for two hours.  Clementine puree can be frozen.


¼ cup cornstarch
½ cup granulated sugar
½ tsp. salt

1 egg
1 cup cold milk
1 cup hot milk
1/2 cup Clementine puree (See instructions above)
1 Tblsp. undiluted orange juice concentrate

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the cornstarch, sugar, salt, egg and cold milk.  Slowly whisk in hot milk and cook over medium high heat until mixture begins to boil. Lower heat to medium and continue cooking, whisking constantly, for 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and add Clementine puree and orange juice concentrate.  Stir and allow to cool in the pan, stirring occasionally to prevent a skin from forming on top.

Pour into six dessert dishes.  Good at room temperature or chilled.  Refrigerate leftovers.

ClemPudding (2)


Country Cherry Pudding


I found this recipe in a 1945 Calumet booklet – Favorite Recipes for Country Kitchens.  This makes a quick and easy dessert for lunch or supper.  As it bakes, the sauce becomes thick and cooks into the cake.  Cuts and serves nicely.


  • ½ cup plus 2 Tblsp. all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 Tblsp. Canola oil
  • ¾ cup frozen tart cherries, thawed and drained


  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup cherry brandy or cherry juice
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tblsp. butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
Grease a 9-inch baking pan

In a medium bowl mix together the flour, baking powder salt and ¼ cup granulated sugar.  Add milk and canola oil to make a stiff dough.


Spread the dough in the bottom of the baking pan.  Dampening your fingertips with water will help spread the dough evenly.

Arrange the thawed/drained cherries on top of the dough.


In a small saucepan, combine the water, cherry brandy or juice, ¼ cup sugar and butter.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Pour boiling mixture over cherries.


Place in oven and bake for approximately 45 minutes @ 375 degrees F.  Cool on a wire rack.

Serve warm.

4 servings. 


Leftover Biscuit Pudding

Normally, I make up my Biscuit Mix* and keep it in the refrigerator until I’m ready to make just a few biscuits for my daughter and me.  I use 1/4 cup of the mix and about a tablespoon of milk per biscuit.  This time, when I made up the mix, I forgot and added the full ¾ cup of milk and we had 10 biscuits which were good hot from the oven but not that great reheated.  Then, I remembered seeing a post on Syrup and Biscuits about her country grandma who made a kind of bread pudding out of leftover biscuits.  This sounded like a good answer to my problem and it was.  The pudding has a smoother, lighter texture than regular bread pudding and it’s very good – just like something Grandma might have made.


  • 4 or 5 baking powder biscuits (about 2-½ inches dia. )
  • 2-½ cups milk, divided
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F

Butter or spray a 9-inch square baking dish

Crumble biscuits over the bottom of the 9-inch prepared baking dish.

Pour 1 cup of milk over the biscuit crumbles.

Allow the mixture to soak until milk is absorbed.  Sprinkle granulated sugar over the top of the mixture.

In a 2-cup measure, place the eggs, vanilla, cinnamon and the remaining 1-½ cups of milk.  Whisk until blended.

Pour milk mixture over top of biscuits.

Bake @ 325 degrees F for 40 to 45 minutes until top is browned and mixture is set.

Best served warm.  Leftovers could be warmed briefly in the microwave.

Servings:  6-8

One-fourth cup of raisins or nuts could be mixed with the biscuit crumbles before the milk is added.

The pudding is very good served plain, but Syrup and Biscuits served her pudding with a rich bourbon sauce.  I opted for a lower fat version with a mellow bourbon flavor.


  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. cornstarch
  • 1 cup cold water.
  • 2 Tblsp. butter
  • 3 Tblsp. bourbon

In a small saucepan place sugar cornstarch and cold water.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for 3 minutes.

Remove from heat and stir in butter until melted.  Stir in bourbon.

Makes about 1-½ cups of sauce

*Biscuit Mix

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tblsp. baking powder
  • 1/3 cup vegetable shortening

This amount of mix combined with ¾ cup milk will make ten 2-½-inch biscuits.  Bake @ 410 degrees F for 12 minutes.

Refrigerate mix in a covered container and use ¼ cup of mix plus about 1 Tblsp. Milk for each biscuit.  This mix is also good for dumplings or as a topping for casseroles.

Mother’s Chocolate Pudding

One of my favorite dishes growing up was my mother’s chocolate pudding.  Along with her rice pudding, it became a life saver for me when I was sick or pregnant or sick and pregnant.  I could eat it when nothing else agreed with me.  It’s a very simple recipe and so much better than the little cups in the grocery store.  The main thing is to keep whisking until it’s done to a chocolatey brown smoothness.


  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup undiluted evaporated milk
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 Tblsp. butter

In a medium saucepan, place the granulated sugar, cornstarch, egg and salt.  Whisk together and gradually add the evaporated milk.

In a separate small bowl, mix together the cocoa powder and 1 cup of hot water until cocoa is dissolved.  Add to the egg mixture, blending well.  Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until mixture begins to bubble.  Continue to cook for another two minutes, whisking constantly.

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and butter.  Pour into 4 dessert dishes and allow to cool.  Pudding may be refrigerated but I like it best at room temperature.

Yield:  4 servings

Withrow’s Date Pudding

From 1946 to 1950, I attended Withrow High School, at that time a prestigious school with a beautiful campus in Cincinnati’s Hyde Park.  I traveled by streetcar from our home in the not-so-prestigious area called the East End to this beautiful place which also had an enormous cafeteria with an extensive lunch menu.  I tried dishes here that were brand-new to me.  One of my favorites was a dessert called Date Pudding.  I loved the gooey pudding with crunchy walnuts and a dab of whipped cream (well before the era of Cool Whip).

After I left Withrow, I tried date pudding at restaurants without finding one that was similar to the cafeteria version.  When I started cooking, I tried out a lot of recipes and found some good ones, but not quite the right one.  Then, I found this one in 1989 (not sure where it turned up) and it was what I was looking for.  In my recipe binder I have a note, “2/25/89 – excellent.  Like Withrow H.S.’s in late 1940s.”


  • 1-1/2 cups light brown sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups hot water
  • 2 Tblsp. butter

Place the sugar, water and butter in a medium saucepan and heat to boiling.  Remove from heat and let cool while preparing the rest of the dessert.

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tblsp. baking powder
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped dates
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

In a 9×9 baking dish mix together the flour, brown sugar, salt and baking powder.  Stir in the chopped dates and nuts….

….then the milk and vanilla.

Mix together just until all of the dry ingredients are absorbed.  Spread out evenly in the baking dish.

Pour the warm syrup over the top and set baking dish on a large pan to catch spills.

Bake @ 350 degrees F for 35 minutes.  Cool on a wire rack.

Serve warm with a little of the sauce from the bottom of the baking dish and a bit of whipped cream or topping.

This is also good at room temperature.  It is very rich – small servings are advised.

Makes 12 servings.

I eat a few bites and I’m transported back to Withrow’s noisy, crowded cafeteria and a special lunchtime treat.

Beef Stew and Orange Tapioca Pudding

One of my favorite busy-day recipes is Gone All Afternoon Stew.  I first found this recipe in 1994 in a cookbook binder distributed among my youngest son’s fellow engineers at McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing) – Bits & Bytes. It is easy to throw together and bake in a slow oven for the afternoon.


  • 1 lb. round or chuck steak, trimmed and cut into small pieces
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced (I use 9 baby carrots, sliced lengthwise)
  • 2 large potatoes, sliced
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Grinding or two of black pepper
  • One 10-3/4 oz. can tomato soup
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 10 oz. package frozen peas (add during last 15 minutes of baking)

Preheat oven @ 275 degrees F for 4 hours’ baking time or 250 degrees F for 5 hours’ baking time.

Put all ingredients except peas in a large casserole.  Mix well, cover and bake in preheated 275 degree F oven for 4 hours or 250 degree F for 5 hours.  Add peas during the last 15 minutes of baking.

Yield:  4-6 servings 

This makes a thick, delicious stew.  If the stew is too thick, it can be thinned with a little bit of water.  I like to serve a good homemade yeast roll with this dish.

After a hearty dinner, it’s nice to have something lighter for dessert.  I had come across a bargain on oranges this week.  They were super-large and I had way more than I would be able to eat out-of-hand, so I went looking for a dessert to use some of them.

I found this recipe for an easy tapioca pudding that sounded just right.


  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1-1/4 cups fresh orange juice
  • 1 tsp. orange zest
  • 1-1/4 cups frozen whipped topping, thawed (divided)

Mix sugar, tapioca and orange juice in a medium saucepan.  Let stand for 5 minutes.

Heat mixture to boiling over medium high heat, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat and let cool for 20 minutes.

Stir the tapioca mixture, then fold in 1 cup of the whipped topping until smooth.  Divide mixture between 4 serving dishes and top each with one tablespoon of the reserved topping. 

This is such a pretty dessert with a bright, fresh flavor.

It was a good meal.

Mother’s Butterscotch Pudding

When I was a child in the 1930s-1940s, my mother always served a light dessert with supper.  It might be as simple as a can of fruit cocktail, carefully portioned into four dishes so that each person got a piece of a cherry or a package of My-T-Fine pudding cooked with diluted canned milk (my favorite was chocolate which had the tiniest bits of nuts in it).  Sometimes she made a steamed chocolate pudding which my father loved and I ate only because of the nutmeg hard sauce on top of it.  Many times, she whipped up her own delicious pudding such as her Butterscotch Pudding.  Mother never considered herself a good cook but her puddings were perfect – sweet, smooth and comforting.  I especially liked butterscotch which she also made into a pie sometimes on Sundays, with a thin one-egg meringue.  This cooked pudding is so much better than the packaged kind and easily reaches smooth perfection  if the cook is willing and able to stand at the stove and whisk until the pudding is done.


  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup cold milk
  • 1 cup hot milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 Tblsp. butter

In a medium saucepan, place the egg, brown sugar, cornstarch and salt.  Whisk together until smooth.  Gradually add one cup of cold milk, whisking to blend.  Add one cup of hot milk, blending well.  Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until mixture begins to bubble.  Continue to whisk for 2 more minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and butter.

Pour into serving dishes and cover until ready to serve.  I like this pudding best at room temperature but it’s also delicious chilled and leftovers should be refrigerated.

Yield:  4 servings

I’ve posted previously about Mother’s pudding – her banana pudding….

and her rice pudding….

….all of them nice desserts for family supper.

Beef Stroganoff and Rice Pudding

rusty bridge

My youngest daughter is a busy stay-at-home mom who always finds time to get together with me on Fridays for lunch.  I try to make meals that are tasty, quick and easy, and reduced in fat and calories.  Here is the meal we had this week.

I first made this Beef Stroganoff in 1976 and it became one of our family’s favorite dishes.  In moderation and using low-fat ingredients, it’s also a good entree  when one or more of us is trying to lose weight.   The original recipe was from a Crisco cookbook, but over the years I eliminated the Crisco altogether and lightened anything I could.  It’s a traditional meal after having roast beef on Sunday.


  • 1 can low-fat cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup light sour cream
  • 2 Tblsp. catsup
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 Tblsp. dried minced onions
  • 1 cup leftover roast beef, cubed

In a large skillet, place soup, sour cream, catsup, Worcestershire Sauce, pepper and onions, stirring well, and bring to a simmer.  Add leftover roast beef and continue simmering until mixture is bubbly and heated through.  Serve over noodles.

Yield:  4 servings 

Based on 4 servings of Stroganoff and 1/2 cup of cooked noodles per serving, the nutrition count per DietPower software is:  209 calories, 8.74 g fat, 49 mg cholesterol, 276 mg sodium, 615 mg potassium, 15.2 g carbohydrate, 1.44 g dietary fiber, 2.5 g sugars, 14.4 g protein.

Weight Watchers Points Plus:  5


My mother’s rice pudding was not only a childhood favorite, but an essential dish when I was sick or pregnant or otherwise indisposed.  I could eat this pudding when I couldn’t eat anything else.  I liked it with a sprinkle of cinnamon and a drizzle of evaporated milk (or cream for everyone else).   My youngest daughter loves anything with lemon, so now I make a lemon sauce to spoon over the rice pudding.  Delicious and not too bad calorie-wise.


  • 2 cups cooked medium grain white rice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1 beaten egg

In a medium saucepan, place the rice, salt, sugar, milk and egg and mix together well.  Bring mixture to a boil, then lower heat and continue to cook for one minute, stirring constantly.

Spoon pudding into 6 dessert dishes.


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. cornstarch
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 Tblsp. butter
  • 3 Tblsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon peel

Combine sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan.  Add water and heat mixture, stirring constantly, until it comes to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.  If mixture appears lumpy, whisk until smooth.

Remove from heat and stir in butter, lemon juice and lemon peel.  Serve warm  over Grandma Martha’s Rice Pudding (warm or room temperature is best).

Sauce will be quite stiff when cool.  It can be warmed in the microwave or in a pan over hot water.

Yield:  1-1/2 cups sauce.  Also good over pound cake, apple cake, pie, etc.

A note in my recipe binder reads:  “From Favorite Recipes for Quilters.  We like this with Grandma Martha’s Rice Pudding.  First made 2/23/95.”


Nutrition count per DietPower software based on 6 servings of pudding and 2 tablespoons of sauce per serving:  228 calories, 5.7 g fat, 40.1 g carbohydrate, .8 g dietary fiber, 4.4 g protein.

Weight Watchers PointsPlus:  6

Cranberry Apple Bread Pudding with Applejack Sauce

puddingThe recipe for this dessert is adapted from one in Susan Branch’s Christmas from the Heart of the Home cookbook.  I have all of her cookbooks and they are simply wonderful.  You can get an idea of her work on her great web page.   I made a few minor changes in my recipe, including using applejack for the sauce.  The original recipe called for whiskey, but brandy or rum would also be good.


  • 6 cups of bread cubes (day-old firm bread – I use stale homemade bread)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1-1/2 Tblsp. vanilla (that’s right – 1-1/2 tablespoons)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1-1/2 cups tart apple, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup cranberries, fresh or frozen

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F

Put bread cubes in a colander and pour over 2 cups hot tap water.  Let stand 5  minutes, then squeeze out excess moisture.

crumbsIn a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Add the apples, cranberries and bread.  Stir lightly until blended.

mixturePour mixture into a buttered 9×9 baking dish.  Bake @ 325 degrees F for one hour and 20 minutes.


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 Tblsp.  applejack
  • 1 egg, beaten

In a small pan over medium low heat, melt the butter.  Add sugar and stir about 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and slowly stir in applejack, continue heating and stirring for one minute.  Remove from heat, slowly add a small amount of sauce mixture to beaten eggs, add eggs to mixture over low heat, stirring until thickened.

ajackServe the bread pudding warm with warm applejack sauce.

servingThis makes a nice, comforting wintertime dessert.