Saturday, 21 September 2013

Savoury bread pudding

I am tongue tied and have writers block today. Actually, I've had writer's block for days. I've been meaning to write this blog post for days, but haven't had time to edit the photos. But here it is now!

Well, what's happened these past few days? My dad's left for Malaysia, back to tend to his business and visit my grandmother, relatives and friends. Mid-semester break's over. It passed so quickly and slowly at the same time. It was mooncake/mid-autumn festival on Thursday! I have an abundance of mooncake at home and am thinking of learning how to make them for next year's festival. I realised that we're pretty lucky here. Mooncakes are pretty expensive, but the cheapest you can get is about $20 per box of four. But in Malaysia, mooncakes can cost up to RM20 for one! Which is around NZ$10. And apparently in China, you can get a mooncake that's even more astoundingly priced... thousands of dollars for one! WHAT?! Is it made out of diamonds and gold? And who the heck would buy that? 

Now that i've told you what's happened, I can tell you what will happen! (Not that it'll affect you in anyway, but I'm super excited about it!) My family is going back to malaysia next January for Chinese New Year! Yay! It's been 2 years since I last went back, and even longer since I last celebrated Chinese New Year back home. Can't wait to see the row after row of New Year snacks packed in red containers, the red and gold lanterns adorning the malls and streets, to get sick of hearing Chinese New Year songs, to eat all the food that I didn't savior during my childhood, and of course, the best part of all, to see my grandmothers, aunties, uncles and cousins! And we might be going to China too! It's gonna be a great holiday. Now... time to find a way to earn some money. 

Anyway, I'm sorry that today's post is fairly unexciting for you. My writer's block still lingers on. Hopefully the photos and recipe idea entertained you! And I've got to get back to preparing for a seminar on Monday about carotenoids in carrots! Interesting and important little pigments these are. I'll share more later on on it! 

But now, I will share a recipe for savoury bread pudding. Follow on from the savoury theme, this recipe is a twist from the traditional and conventional sweet bread and butter pudding. It's healthy, it's tasty and you don't feel guilty eating it! Admittedly, the idea came from somewhere else - Spoon Fork Bacon (these guys are awesome), though I did not follow their recipe. I made this for lunch one day when I was home alone. I actually made another version of it again for Peter and I put some leftover herby tomato sauce that my dad made and Peter called it 'Pizza in a bowl' haha. Interesting. It looked and smelled delicious but i didn't take a photo of it :( 

[Savoury Bread Pudding]
Serves 1 
You can easily multiply the ingredients to make a big pudding, and substitute any of these ingredients with whatever you have on hand.

1 ramekin
Olive oil
1 thick slice of good bread
1 medium size button mushroom, thickly sliced
about 1 tablespoon of green peas
1 square of firm tofu (about 4cm x 4cm), cubed
Some carrots, about 1 tbsp in total, cut into the tiniest cubes (these give amazing little crunches as you bite into the pudding)
1 egg
splash of milk (soy milk or other milk works too)
1 teaspoon chilli paste (omit it if you want, but a bit of spice kicks this up a notch! I used a chilli paste with black beans in it and wow the black beans go really well with cheese!) 
Tasty cheese, about 1 tbsp, grated

1. Preheat your oven to 200C.
2. Oil the sides of the ramekin.
3. Roughly rip your bread up into little pieces and toss them in olive oil. Set aside. 
4. In a little pan with olive oil, lightly cook the mushrooms until coloured. Set aside.
5. Mix the bread, mushroom, tofu and veg together and drop them into the ramekin. 
6. Whisk together the egg, milk, salt, pepper and chilli together. You don't have to whisk the egg too thoroughly. I quite like how you get bits of egg whites laced through bits of egg yolks. 
7. Pour the egg mixture into the ramekin, over the filling, carefully. 
8. Top with grated cheese.
9. Bake for about 10-15 minutes.
10. Serve! 

This recipe takes no time to make at all and you can enjoy your lunch in under half an hour! Do the cleaning and washing up and make yourself a good cup of tea while you wait for the pudding to bake. Enjoy!

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