Part of the fun of cooking for me is taking ordinary things and pudding (corny typo intended) a new twist on them. Here in Israel we are coming to the end of strawberry season and that means it's the 'eat every strawberry in sight season' for me because I know I won't have them again for a whole year. So it's at this point in the year that I made my way to the shuk and mesmerized by the glistening red berries (and scared of the man yelling at me from behind them) I bought kilo's of them all the while forgetting they have the shelf life of, well, a berry. Tubs of sorbet, fruit salad, and ice cream already made, I came up with this. Strawberry shortcake has to be one of the best desserts ever created- simple, yet divine. Buttery shortcake, ripe strawberries, whipped cream- holy yum!
Bread pudding is also quite yummy but doesn't get enough attention out in the world. It is basically bread baked in a custard that you can add practically anything to, sweet or savory and it comes out delicious. In a stroke of genius (and in an attempt to rid my freezer of leavened bread products) I decided to use leftover butter croissants that my husband brought me from !Costco! and all I can say is YIPEEEEEEEEEE. Be warned however, if you haven't already caught on, that this is not a dish for the calorie conscious.
8 butter croissants, cut into cubes
2 cups whipping cream
1 cup milk
3 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1 Tbl vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
2 pints strawberries
1/4 cup good strawberry jam
Preheat oven to 350. Spray an 8 inch square pan with cooking spray. Whisk together the cream, milk, eggs, yolks, sugar, vanilla and salt. Line the bottom of the pan with one layer of cubes. Spread with the jam and sprinkle half of the strawberries on top. Top with another layer of cubes. Pour the custard mixture over and press down to make sure all the cubes are coated. Top with the rest of the strawberries and bake for about 40 minutes or until the pudding is set and no longer liquidy. Let the pudding cool for 20-30 minutes before serving so it doesn't fall apart.