We picked up a 4-pack of Harpoon Leviathan Quad on a whim a few weekends ago and, after tasting it, knew that it would be great paired with a dessert. I felt that the rich raisin sweetness of the beer lent itself well to the flavors of chocolate and cherry so I devised this bread pudding that incorporates dark chocolate and sweet and tangy dried cherries. We served it at last weekend’s dinner party and our guests loved it! It’s an easy dessert that tastes like it took a lot longer than it actually did. Watch it carefully as it bakes though…I left mine in the oven for a few minutes too long!
A special thank you to my Uncle Brad for sending us this wonderful wine as a housewarming gift! It’s a blend of the top five major Bordeaux varieties and is a deliciously smooth, rich and complex wine. The flavors of cherry, raspberry, and blackberry made it a perfect accompaniment for the bread pudding and the mocha undertone of the wine complimented the chocolate in the dessert. Delicious!
As Katryn already mentioned, this is an intensely rich and flavorful beer. Not to be trifled with, this quad is brewed with Belgian Trappist yeast and is a whopping 11.75% alcohol! Because of the intense sweet flavors of the beer and its high alcohol content it is perfect to enjoy as a dessert beer with other rich flavors. Katryn’s tasty bread pudding with chocolate and cherries was the perfect accompaniment to my tasty beer. That’s right, I said it, the pudding was the accompaniment to the beer that was dessert. Yum.
Chocolate Cherry Bread Pudding:
4 cups 1-inch cubes egg bread with crust (about 6 ounces)
1 1/4 cups semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips, divided
1/2 cup dried cherries
1 cup heavy whipping cream, divided
1 cup half and half, divided
5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
4 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1/2 cup sugar
Toss bread cubes, 1/2 cup chocolate chips, and cherries in large bowl to blend.
Whisk 1/2 cup cream, 1/2 cup half and half, and cocoa in heavy medium saucepan to blend. Add remaining 3/4 cup chocolate chips; stir over low heat until melted and smooth. Gradually whisk in remaining 1/2 cup cream and 1/2 cup half and half. Whisk eggs, egg yolk, and sugar in medium bowl to blend. Whisk in chocolate-cream mixture. Stir into bread mixture. Let stand 1 hour for bread to absorb some of custard.
Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter six (1- to 1 1/4-cup) ramekins. Divide pudding mixture among ramekins. Bake puddings until set in centers, about 30 minutes.
Top warm puddings with whipped cream and serve.