Turning savory into sweet and vice versa is very big trend in the culinary field today; we see herbs and vegetables in desserts and we see desserts turned savory. A few months ago we had a candy manufaturing company at the convention center, not only did we use their product in the desserts, but we used them in savory items as well- Chocolate Almond Demi Glace with Short Ribs, Mozzarella Cheesecake with Tomato Basil Jam. They were awesome!
I love bread pudding, and recently have been playing with savory ones. It is such a great alternative to potatoes, rice and pasta sides. This recipe is perfectly delicious!
- 1 Eggplant, diced in 1 inch cubes
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 loaf fresh rye bread, cut in 1 inch cubes
- 1 small onion , large diced
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups dairy (I used half heavy cream and half milk)
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Pre heat oven to 425. Start by tossing the diced eggplant in olive oil and laying it out on a sheetpan (cookie sheet :)). Roast for about 30 minutes until brown and tender. Allow to cool. At the same time as the eggplant roasts, using a second oven, or counter top toaster oven, and toast the rye bread on low heat, 250 for 15 minutes. While everything toast and roasts, saute the onion over meduim high heat- semi carmelized, semi fried, I like my onions to be a bit burnt as it adds so much flavor. Set onions aside to cool. Whip eggs, dairy, lemon zest, lemon juice and seasonings together in a large bowl.
Turn oven down to 350. Add toasted bread and onions to cream and egg mixture and toss, pour ingredients into either a parchment paper lined 9 x12 baking dish or a 9 x 12 baking dish sprayed with cooking spray, aka- “pam”. Place the roasted eggplant evenly around the dish carefully so the eggplant doesn’t fall apart. Bake for 45 minutes. We ate it right away, but it is also perfect to serve the next day. When you allow it to cool, you can cut perfect squares, place on sheetpan, cover with foil and reheat at 300 for about 20 minutes. This will look so nice on a plated dinner, it will also help to free time on party day.
Feel free to substitute breads, at work we use pretzel bread- which is also AmaZing!