Caramelised Bread and Butter Pudding

This pudding is the perfect comfort food if it’s cold outside — with it’s lovely soft, sweet middle and delicious crunchy top. If you’re having friends over for a meal and really want to impress try swapping the white bread with Italian pannetone.

Serves 8

6-7 slices white bread from a sandwich loaf (I sometimes use Italian Pannetone for an extra decadent treat)
500ml milk
500ml double cream
1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise, seeds scraped out and set aside
3 egg yolks
50ml soft brown sugar (we like to use Fairtrade)

1. Cut the slices of bread into triangles and arrange in an ovenproof dish.

2.Bring the milk and cream to a boil together with the vanilla bean and its seeds.

3. Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture turns light and pale yellow in colour, and doubles in volume.

4. Remove the vanilla bean and pour the hot milk and cream onto the eggs and sugar while whisking continuously. Pour this mixture onto the bread and leave to swell for 15 mins.

5. Preheat the oven to 160C (325F)

6. Place the dish in the oven and bake for 40 mins.

7. Just before serving, sprinkle with the sugar and caramelise with a kitchen blow torch or under a preheated grill.