My English mother loved to make bread pudding, and when we were living in South Africa many years ago, I found a recipe that added the meringue topping. I adapted the idea and came up with my peach version. Mum declared it better than her original!
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup water
- 4 cups sliced peeled peaches
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup sugar, divided
- 2 cups milk
- 5 slices French bread (1 inch thick)
- In a large saucepan, combine the brown sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon. Stir in water until smooth; add peaches. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Cook and stir 1-2 minutes longer or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in lemon juice and butter. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat egg yolks on high speed for 3 minutes or until light and fluffy. Gradually add salt and 1/3 cup sugar, beating until thick and lemon-colored. Stir in milk.
- Dip bread into egg mixture; soak for 1 minute. Place slices into a greased 11-in. x 7-in. baking dish. Spoon peach mixture evenly over bread layer. Pour remaining egg mixture over peaches. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until center is set.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, on high until stiff peaks form. Spread over hot pudding, sealing edges to pan. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until meringue is golden brown. Serve warm. Yield: 8 servings.
Originally published as Meringue-Topped Peach Bread Pudding in Reminisce August/September 2009, p55
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