Dulce de Leche Dark Chocolate Bread Pudding

Stirrin' It Up: Dulce De Leche Dark Chocolate Bread Pudding (Feb. 14, 2008)

Prep Time: 1½ Hours

Yields: 8–10 Servings

Dulce de leche is Spanish and literally translates to "milk candy." It is found across the world as a popular milk-based dessert sauce. Its origins are often disputed, but it is likely that a French military cook created it in the 14th century. This recipe is yet another variation of traditional bread pudding, made with the famed caramel sauce.

2 cups dulce de leche ice cream topping or butterscotch-caramel sauce, divided
½ cup bittersweet chocolate chips
8 croissants, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 tbsps melted unsalted butter
1½ cups heavy whipping cream
¼ cup sugar
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 tbsps dark rum
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
powdered sugar to dust

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place croissant cubes in a large bowl. Drizzle with 3 tbsps melted butter and toss. Transfer bread to a rimmed baking sheet and bake approximately 12 minutes or until bread begins to brown, stirring occasionally.  Remove from oven and cool. Grease an 11"x 7"x 2 glass baking dish or 8 individual serving-sized ramekins with non-stick spray and set aside. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together whipping cream, 1 cup dulce de leche, chocolate and sugar. Heat until chocolate is melted and mixture is blended and bubbling. Remove from heat and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk eggs and yolks together. Add rum, vanilla and salt. Gradually whisk in warm milk mixture. Stir in bread cubes and let soak 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour custard mixture into prepared dish and bake approximately 35 minutes or until pudding is puffed and set in center. Dust with powdered sugar. Serve warm with remaining dulce de leche as a sauce.