Now normally, mexican bread pudding or capirotada, is more savory than sweet. My grandmother used to make capirotada all the time and honestly, I HATED IT. She would put the usuals like raisins, carrots, bread, milk and then top it with cheddar cheese. I just couldn't eat it and refuse to till this day.
For this recipe, I am using bolillos. A little history here, did you know that bolillos were actually influenced by the French? Mexico at one time did have a monarchy in King Maximilian I before the famous Battle of Puebla also known as Cinco de Mayo that we are all familiar with (thanks to Benito Juarez). They ended up creating mariachis, paper mache, and of course bolillos.
12 to 14 cups French bread (or bolillos)
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups heavy cream
4 cups whole milk
6 large eggs
1 8 oz bottle mexican sweet and condensed milk
5 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp all spice
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins
a couple of tbsp mexican cajeta (a mexican style caramel)
First, I am using mexican bolillos. These are basically french rolls. Tear them up and place into a bowl or pan and allow to dry for a short while. Every so often mix it up as the open air allows the bread to harden.
Combine with a whisk the heavy cream, milk, sweet condensed milk, and eggs in a large bowl. I am using sweet condensed milk instead of sugar since it will make it taste that much different. When I was growing up, my grandmother used to use mexican condensed milk. It was great and was a little sweeter than your normal sweet condensed milk.
Next add all of the spices to the liquid mixture.Whisk assuring that the spices mix well.
Unlike the Bourbon Bread Pudding, add the raisins to your bread mixture. I personally like to have both regular raisins and dried cranberries.
Pour the cream mixture over the bread, and stir to combine. Allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for about 35 minutes. Notice that I have placed all of the bread mixture in a disposable pan. Some of you know how I am all about making it easy for the cook.
Take out of the oven and you are ready to serve. If you want, add a little more cajeta to your bread pudding. What's the harm?