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Dessert Recipe: Grandma's Old-Fashioned Bread Pudding

A delicious bread pudding recipe from the 1920s.

When I was a little girl, six years old in 1944, I loved watching my mom bake in the kitchen. We didn't have much money back then, but mom sure knew how to stretch the food between the six of us. Nothing ever got thrown away, like left-over cakes, sticky buns, and breads that became stale. (We didn't have baggies or plastic containers in those days.) Mom would have me break up the stale bread and cakes into little pieces for our bread pudding.

Grandma's Old-Fashioned Bread Pudding Recipe
3 cups stale bread or cake (4 cups if you want a firmer bread pudding)
2 cups milk, scolded with 1/4 cup butter
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup raisins
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt




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An old kitchen from the 1940s.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 1-1/2 quart casserole dish or baking dish.

(That's easy to do today. I remember my mom in a dress and heels, trying to light the oven with a match, on her hand and knees with the oven door open, (we had a gas pilot on our old stove).

Break stale bread and cakes into bite size pieces. On the stove over medium heat scold the milk and then add butter. Take off the heat and add eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt, cinnamon and raisins. Pour over bread pieces and stir, place in the baking dish.

Place the baking dish in a pan of water about an inch deep.  (This is so it doesn't burn and it will make it a nice custard.)  After about 40-45 minutes test the custard to see if it is finished by inserting a cool silver knife into the custard, about an inch from the edge of the baking dish. If the knife comes out clean, it is ready.  Place on counter to cool.  It can be served warm or cold.  (We had it warm and sometimes my dad would put a little milk on his portion.) mmm..., And I can still picture her smiling with pride when she made us happy with a homemade dessert.

If you are looking for a chocolate bread pudding recipe, use this same recipe, omit the spices, and replace the raisins with semi-sweet chocolate pieces.




(Mom sent me this along with the recipe.)

I can see it in my mind's eye as a little girl, at the time I helped grand mom. I believe the stove was white 1937 GE gas stove model. I lived in the city (Philadelphia)  in row house at 1915 Oakdale street., I also lived at 1942 Oakdale street when I was about 4,  I only remember we lived near the corner and the candy/ice cream store was on the corner, so that is where I was allowed to buy penny candy, (when I had a penny to spend).  In that house I remember grand mom having "blackout" curtains for when the air raid siren went off, we had to close the curtains,  They were dark green.  That is also were my brother Roy stabbed me in the head with a pencil.
I still have the mark on  my head to prove it!

Love, mom



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