October 25, 2010

Spending a four day weekend on Marthas Vineyard, off the coast of Massachusetts, is always delightful. On a sparkling cool and beautiful October weekend, surrounded by your best friends, it’s nearly perfect.

A glorious weekend. Great food. Great friends. Great times.

I always am the one who does the cooking, and somehow I know you won’t be surprised to hear that. And while this past weekend had many culinary high points (boudin blanc, chicken and dumplings, spaghetti carbonara), the one dish I’m not likely to forget soon was made on a whim, simply because I hate waste.

Cider doughnuts are a New England fall staple. In my memory, they’re served on a chilly morning, as you set off to pick apples at an orchard or decide on your Halloween Jack-O-Lantern at a pumpkin patch. There’s really nothing like them, and they’re best warm. And exceptionally fresh.

And that’s where the problem started. You see, we went to a farm stand to pick up produce for the weekend, and there was a bag of six cider doughnuts. They weren’t warm. They were packaged up. But there was nothing I could do to ignore that siren call.

Of course, I immediately regretted the purchase. Dry and stale. But the flavor was there and it was good. The next day, with a few basic staples, I pulled together this delicious dessert.

The next time I see stale cider doughnuts, I expect I’ll pick up two bags, because this was delicious and we all could have eaten a second helping.


Cider Doughnut Bread Pudding
Makes one loaf pan

Six cider doughnuts
4 large eggs
1 c heavy cream
1/2 c whole milk
1/2 t ground ginger
Pinch nutmeg
1/2 c prunes, plumped and chopped coarsely

Generously butter a loaf pan.
Whisk together eggs, cream, milk and spices
Chop the doughnuts up into large pieces
Soak the doughnuts in the egg mixture while oven preheats to 350°
Stir in the prunes.
Press the mixture into the loaf pan and bake, uncovered for about an hour.
Serve slightly warm, with vanilla ice cream.

Can’t find cider doughnuts? Substitute old fashioned doughnuts and substitute 1 c diced, peeled apple for the prune, and add 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 c sugar to the egg mixture.


11 Responses to “Waste Not: Cider Doughnut Bread Pudding”

  1. Domenica

    fantastic idea, Cathy. Nothing is better than a fresh cider doughnut, but when they’re stale, they are STALE. What a perfect way to repurpose them!

  2. Liz the Chef

    I have lived away from the East Coast for so long I had forgotten about cider doughnuts. Will sub plain ones and try this delicious recipe. Larry and I are bread pudding junkies.

  3. Lynda

    Love this! I grew up spending summers on the vineyard, and love returning as frequently as possible. Unfortunately I live too far away to manage an October visit which must be a beautiful time to be there.

  4. Joyce Pinson @friendsdriftinn

    Living in Ky, we always serve bread pudding with a hard sauce…the key ingredient bourbon. Cheers!

    With this cider doughnut variation, I am wondering about an sauce with some apple brandy? What do you think?

  5. Mr H

    …like the idea of prunes (aka dried plums nowadays!) vs. raisins. Wondering what other dried-then-plumped would be good.

  6. trinichad

    what a fantastic idea. Do you think I could try savory with some leftover foccacia? Must try and thank you.

    • Cathy

      Absolutely. foccacia makes great bread pudding. If it has a salty top, cut back on the salt in the custard.


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