Sunday, October 3, 2010

Caramelized Pineapple Pudding Cakes with Store Bought Brioche

Caramelized Pineapple Pudding Cake with caramel which turned itself into a spun sugar art exhibit

Rose's Caramelized Pineapple Pudding Cakes is an incredibly rich dessert.  Rose includes a brioche recipe for the bread pudding base.  It sounded easy enough for someone not intimidated by yeast.  That would not be me.  Luckily Whole Foods had a lovely little loaf of brioche.

The brioche was trimmed, cut into cubes and dried in the oven, filling the kitchen with an amazing aroma.

Next caramel is made to line the ramekins.  Having a pastry brush dipped in water to wipe down any sugar crystals clinging to the inside of the pan helped prevent rock candy forming.  Sugar molecules are clever things.

Mixing the Creme Anglaise was very easy, except for frantic stirring ensuring the pot didn't turn into nutmeg flavored scrambled eggs. Poured over the brioche, it was left for a bit in the frig to soak up all the nutmeg goodness.

I am a Baby Boomer which means I grew up on canned pineapples, not freshly roasted ones.  I've never roasted any fruit before so this was a first and quite fun.  I mumbled quite a bit for not buying a pineapple corer at William Sonoma.and hacked away at the unsuspecting thing.  Caramelized sugar and pineapple juice basted the pineapple in my beloved cast iron skillet.

Once the pineapple cooled, I sliced as directed, although not managing terribly thin slices.  The soaked and drained bread batter was divided among ramekins then submerged into a am I going to the ER today bain marie, and tented with foil.  Forty minutes later we had lovely little puddings.

However, the caramel didn't quite cooperate with the puds.  It stuck to the bottom of the ramekins and was rock hard.  As I pulled the pineapple and sugar out, the caramel pulled into long ribbons!  It also turned itself into spun sugar without benefit of being swung across the kitchen with a lopped off whisk.  It made me feel very creative and quite avant-garde, turning out hip and modern sugar garnish.

The loads of leftover pineapple sauce was mixed with the minuscule Creme Anglaise and spooned onto the plate.  The very delicious Julie's Organic Caramel ice cream, possibly the creamiest ice cream in existence, was scooped on top.

The consensus was mixed.  Too much sugary flavored pineapple for the grandkids and myself.  Not enough for the grown kids, husband or Gena, our horse trainer. Or Daisy, the five month old Chihuahua quality inspector who figured out how to jump onto the computer desk via the chair.

We all, however, LOVED the brioche bread pudding.  Taking leftover soaked bread cubes, I made them into caramel free versions.  I seriously see this as being requested quite often, as in "Grandma, can you make that creamy bread pudding stuff only without the pineapple?"


  1. LOL! I love your caramel! Mine turned up like that too..and i got so mad and i had to press it down flat..LOL! I think there's something wrong with the caramel imo!

  2. i bought brioche too and was thinking of roasting canned pineapple! good to know the caramel is really fiddly. i'll be making mine tonight.

  3. ב''ה

    Looks good. What is that stuff on the top picture?

  4. A ha! you made me laugh. Like you, my caramel was a total flop... I think its the butter addition, next time (if there is a next time) I will be freaking making it the way I know how.. straight sugar until it turns into a beautiful amber.. period - no water, not butter.

  5. I am still finishing mine. I did bake my own brioche and believe it or not, the recipe is easy. Little steps plus 1 1/2 waiting periods. My first try and I was really impressed!

    Okay, I have the caramel in the cups but I am completely lost as to what is the proper consistency for the roasted pineapple sauce. Mine seems to be pretty thick. This is the point where I am currently at. Waiting for the pineapple to cool and slice. I am really going to be bummed if, after 3 1/2 days worth of steps, my dessert ends up with issues.

  6. Mendy,
    It's the caramel from the bottom of the ramekin! When I pulled the stuck pineapple out, this happened.

  7. The artistic caramel makes for a great photo!

  8. Avant-garde indeed! Love it. I skipped this week's cake but it sounds like everybody agrees on two things: the caramel sucked and the brioche was awesome! I've gotta try the brioche for sure.

  9. this looks so impressive! very artistic :)

  10. Vicki, I have a whole new respect for your finished pineapple custards after unmolding my own. I love your caramel ribbons. My caramel stayed hard at the bottom of the ramekins. I also love your idea of ice cream on top. I also think the brioche was the best part.

  11. Wow! That looks great and very pretty! I don't think I am that talented! :)
    It is so nice to meet you!