White Chocolate Bread Pudding

Recipe by Chef Gus Martin of Palace Café in New Orleans

“This ‘cardiac arrest on a plate’ was a dish that Gus Martin chose to pair with my dessert wine in a cooking-wine pairing demonstration we presented to an audience in Dallas, Texas as part of the Dallas Morning News Wine Awards.” —Ray Walsh, Capitello Wines

6    cups heavy whipping cream
2    cups milk
1    cup sugar
20    ounces white chocolate (broken up into small pieces)
4    eggs
15    egg yolks
1    (24-inch) loaf stale French bread


½    cup heavy whipping cream
8    ounces white chocolate (broken up into small pieces)
1    ounces dark chocolate, shaved or grated

1. For the pudding, combine whipping cream, milk and sugar in a large heavy saucepot; mix well. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat. Add white chocolate pieces, and let stand for several minutes or until chocolate melts; stir until smooth. 2. Whisk the eggs and egg yolks in a large mixing bowl. Whisk in the warm chocolate mixture in a slow steady stream; scrape the saucepot with a rubber spatula to remove all the chocolate. 3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut the French bread into thin slices and place in a 9-by-13-inch metal baking pan. Pour half the chocolate mixture over the bread and let stand for about 5 minutes; press the bread into the chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula or fingers to saturate well. Pour the remaining chocolate mixture over the bread and stir to mix well. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 1 hour. 4. Remove the foil and bake for 30 minutes longer or until golden brown. Cool to room temperature and chill, covered, in the refrigerator for 6 to 8 hours or until set. 5. For the ganache, bring whipping cream to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat and add white chocolate pieces. Let stand until chocolate melts, and stir until smooth. 6. Loosen pudding from sides of the pan with a knife and invert onto a work surface. Cut into squares, and then cut squares diagonally into triangles. Place triangles on a baking sheet and reheat at 275°F for 15 minutes or until warm. 7. To serve, place the pudding triangles on serving plates and top with the ganache. Garnish with dark chocolate shavings. Yields 12 servings.

Wine Suggestion: Capitello Dolcino (Gewürztraminer)

Capitello Wines

The word“Capitello” refers to the traditional Italian shrine used to bless vineyards, farmlands and villagers along with the workers that live within them across Italy. Ray Walsh, a native New Zealander, chose the name because he wanted to create an image that symbolized his own unique characteristics: a New World winemaker from under the Southern Cross, bringing new ideas, a new approach and a refreshing style of craft.

With Walsh’s previous winemaking experience at King Estate and New Zealand wineries Villa Maria Estate and Coopers Creek/Kim Crawford Wines, he created Capitello Wines in 2003 to allow more quality time with his 10-year-old son, Desmond.

Capitello is located in Eugene and sources its fruit from five vineyards in the Willamette Valley and one vineyard in Marlborough, New Zealand. Walsh makes Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir and Gewürztraminer.

His respect for the grape and his hands-on approach to winemaking guide all aspects of the process. The goal is pure varietal expression—quality, handcrafted wines that maximize the characteristics unique to each grape.

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