Craig came back after a week in Amsterdam gushing about all of the fabulous food he got to eat while there. Yeah, I have to admit…that hurt a little bit lot. We love Amsterdam. Everything about that city intrigues us and makes us happy. And something that may surprise you, is that the food is fantastic! Cheese…beer…chocolate…about the only thing missing from the happy food pyramid is bacon.
So I got to hear (ad nauseum) about our usual haunts, and how delicious the fondue and Heineken were at Cafe Bern. But this time he went to a couple of new restaurants (oh the nerve of him). These were places that we walked by, on our last trip, but since we couldn’t stop in for a bite we picked up a card so that we had the address (Amsterdam is easy to navigate, but can be a bit confusing when you try to find a place strictly by memory.) for our next visit.
Of course, one of those restaurants now holds the title of having served Craig “the best meal ever eaten.” Now I’m turning green with envy. I picked his brain, mercilessly, to get all the juicy details. He gushed about the dessert he had there and I became obsessed with making it. I made a couple of changes though. In Amsterdam, the dessert was made with bilberries (the closest equivalent we have here in the states is blueberries) and the Sabayon was made with soft curd cheese (which I also made) but I added Cointreau for some extra flavor. The bread is a bit different too. They used a heavy egg bread and I used a can of cinnamon rolls.
The verdict came in that while it tasted different from the dessert he had in Amsterdam, this is “unbelievably fantastic and completely addicting.” This dessert is pure delicious decadence. So, consider yourself warned. You will not be able to eat just a small amount. It’s one layer of yumminess after another.
Sometimes you just have to fight fire with fire.
Makes 4 Servings
- 2 Quarts Buttermilk
For Blueberry Compote
- 1 12 Ounce Bag Frozen Blueberries
- 3 Tablespoons Sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
For Bread Pudding
- 1 12.4 Ounce Can of Cinnamon Rolls (baked, 1 day old and cut into 1/2″ pieces)*
- 1 Egg
- 3/4 Cup Half and Half
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter (melted)
For Sabayon Sauce
- 2 Egg Yolks
- 1/8 Cup Sugar
- 1/8 Cup Cointreau
- 1/4 Cup Quark (soft cheese curds)**
Preheat oven to 150 degrees Farenheit.
Pour buttermilk into dutch oven. Cover and bake in oven for 6-8 hours. Remove from oven. Line colander with double layer of cheesecloth and pour contents of dutch oven into colander and drain for 2 hours. Once drained, put into covered container and chill in refrigerator.
In medium size saucepan add blueberries, sugar and lemon juice. Over medium high heat, stir until ingredients are combined and blueberries start to break down and release their juices (approximately 15-20 minutes). Remove from heat and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit
Melt butter in microwave and set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk egg, sugar and half and half until thoroughly combined. Once butter has cooled almost to room temperature, whisk into egg mixture. Mixture may appear to curdle a bit…don’t worry about it. The curdles should not be cooked egg, they should be droplets of butter.
Divide blueberry mixture between 4 ramekins. Add cinnamon roll pieces on top of blueberries and divide evenly between the 4 ramekins. Pour egg mixture, evenly, into each of the four ramekins. Pour over the tops of the cinnamon roll pieces. Let ramekins sit for 30-60 minutes. Occasionally, lightly press down the bread mixture to help egg mixture soak into cinnamon roll pieces. Be careful not to push so hard as to cause the blueberry juices to come to the top.
Place ramekins into oven and bake for 40-45 minutes. Bread puddings are done when tops are golden brown and contents have puffed up.
Soft Curd Cointreau Sabayon Sauce
In the top of a double boiler add egg yolks, sugar and Cointreau. (Make sure that the bottom of the pan does not touch the hot water below or your sauce will curdle.) Whisk vigorously until the mixture is light yellow. Whisk in the soft curd. Keep whisking until the mixture is light and frothy.
Spoon Sabayon Sauce over tops of bread puddings and serve.
* Bake the cinnamon rolls a day ahead of time. Then let them sit out, overnight, so that they slightly harden and get a bit stale. (You may have to closely guard the rolls so that the Gremlins don’t eat them. Do not put the icing on the cinnamon rolls.
** If you do not have the time to make quark, aka the soft curd cheese, you could substitute ricotta cheese. But I highly recommend that you make the quark. You’ll have plenty of it left over, but it can be used as a spread or any way you would normally use ricotta cheese.