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  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, pumpkin, cream or half-and-half, milk, sugars, rum, salt, spices, and vanilla, stirring to blend.

  2. Lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish or a 9" x 13" pan; if you're going to refrigerate the pudding before baking, be sure to use a dish that can go from the fridge to a hot oven.

  3. Place the cubed bread in the dish in an even layer, and pour the liquid mixture over it. Let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes, or for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.

  4. Preheat your oven to 350°F.

  5. When you're ready to bake the pudding, stir it together to redistribute the custard; quite a bit of it will have been absorbed by the bread.

  6. Sprinkle with grated nutmeg, and bake in a preheated 350°F oven until set and beginning to brown, about 40 to 50 minutes.

  7. Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream; garnish with minced crystallized ginger.

  8. Store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Tips from our Bakers

  • Try using our Pumpkin Yeast Bread. Or use any non-savory bread: brioche, a sweet bread, or plain white or whole wheat bread.

  • This basic formula can be used to make bread pudding from all kinds of leftover bread, even savory herb or cheese-type breads. Simply leave out the pumpkin and add a cup of dried raisins or other dried fruit, if desired. If you're making a savory bread pudding, leave out the sugar and spices (though adding a bit of dry mustard and a cup or two of grated cheese is delightful). Also, if you have just a small amount of leftover bread, cut back the recipe proportionately and bake in a smaller pan, cutting back the baking time accordingly.
  • Want to use fresh pumpkin purée rather than canned? It’s simple to make your own; see how it’s done.