Bread Pudding for Dinner

My timing got thrown off a bit today, not that it was a bad day. Both boys were so fussy this morning that I took them out for a walk immediately after breakfast. They always settle down and enjoy our walks. I went 4 miles today. I had to wear my fuzzy headband to keep my ears warm and a scarf, but was comfortable in just a regular sweater. I bundled the boys up way more. About 1.5 miles in, W said it was "cold" outside. Then he was saying it was "icy cold". But it certainly wasn't. So I explained to him that the weather was "brisk", which is between "cool" and "cold".

We did some fingerpainting when we got back. M was sitting in my lap and really wanted to try, so I let him. Why on earth did I think that a five-month-old baby would be able to fingerpaint? He certainly managed to get paint on his hands, but rather than confine it to the paper he just flailed his hands around wildly and got paint all over everything within his little arm's-length radius. I quickly cleaned the paint off him and put a stop to that. Sorry, M, I was right when I kept W away from the paint until he was over a year old. . .

W, on the other hand, was able to enjoy the paints without making that much of a mess. There was still some extra paint to wipe off the table, chair, wall, and floor, but he got most of it on the paper. He especially enjoyed making hand prints. He didn't seem to be bothered that all the colors got muddy and turned to brown because of his incessant mixing. I didn't mention it, figuring two might be a bit young to worry about color theory. Maybe age three or four.

After the painting, W started getting fussy again, so I decided we should go straight for naptime and have lunch afterwards. But we slept from 12:30pm to 2:30pm, so lunch was around 3pm. Then I was going to try a new recipe, Creole Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce, for snack. But by the time I cleaned up the kitchen from breakfast and lunch (T is no longer really cleaning up in there except for after dinner) so I would have room to cook, the "snack" was going to be done at 5pm. So I made the executive decision that we'd just have the bread pudding for dinner, and I served up entree-sized portions. Yum. I'll definitely be making that recipe again. I left the bourbon sauce off of W's meal. The bread pudding is still good without it.

I didn't follow the recipe exactly, since I didn't have any crushed pineapple I just left it out since it only called for 4 oz anyway. And rather than just use day-old bread, I actually dried out the bread in the oven. This was the way they made bread pudding on America's Test Kitchen. They had a whole scientific explanation of why-- when bread air-dries, the water just gets chemically tucked away into the bread fibers (something like that), but it reappears when the bread is heated. When you toast the bread with heat, the water evaporates clear out of the bread, so it will not reappear the next time the bread is heated. And so this keeps the bread pudding from getting too soggy. I'd have to make the same recipe with both variations to see for myself just how much difference it makes. But it only takes 10 minutes to dry the bread out in the oven, so it's actually even more convenient than having to remember to set the bread out to dry the night before, so I'll probably just stick with this method.