One summer, some years back, I traveled the world. The first half of that summer was spent in Northern Ireland, where I ate chips and gravy for every meal and Flake bars for every dessert. I came home and immediately flew to Kona, Hawaii for a girls trip with my mom and two sisters. To say I was jet lagged is an understatement but when you’re touring amazing volcanoes and eating at ridiculously good farmers’ markets, then jet lag is your last problem. One of my favorite memories of food in Kona was our breakfast. Every morning, we would go to this quaint, open, set right on the beach little restaurant. It was always a buffet and my favorite part was the waffle station. You had your choice of maple syrup, macademia nuts, coconut flakes, and coconut syrup. I would forego every other station just so I could pile my plate high with fluffy waffles and fill their cute little crevices with coconut syrup and nuts. Boy, life was so simple then. And that coconut syrup? The answer is always yes.
This bread pudding is a vacation all its own. It’s for those days you see your friends at the beach but you’re stuck in an icy cold cubicle with a cup of coffee that is no longer warm. It’s for those days when you already took your vacation at the very beginning of summer and August feels like it could go on forever. And if that doesn’t entice you, then hopefully the buttery croissants will! I think you deserve this dessert. And invite some friends over, too!
Our ingredient line up:
From Top Left to Right: Croissants, sugar, vanilla, half and half, toasted coconut, eggs and egg yolks, pistachios (I bet you didn’t see that one coming), lime zest, and mango.
We take our lovely green pistachios and throw in them into the food processor. Add our lime zest and pulse. You could also do this by hand with the pistachios in a ziplock bag using a heavy object. Just stir in zest when done. That’s literally the most difficult step in this bread pudding.
A little bit of egg yolk, a little bit of half and half, and we got ourselves the makings of a luscious custard. Remember that exhausting pistachio mixture? Throw it in and forget the amount of work it took to get here. Whisk! Whisk! Whisk!
Croissants are torn apart and placed into a baking dish. The custard mixture is poured on top. Mango is sprinkled. Now take those delicate paws of yours and press down on the puddin’. Everything needs to be submerged. If you eat croissants in torn bite size pieces, then it takes around 50 to equal one croissant, right? Right?!
We bake then sprinkle with the toasted coconut.
Our coconut syrup is two ingredients: coconut milk and sweetened condensed milk. Just cook until thick and blended. We got ourselves an all purpose syrup! Pour this onto the bread pudding then save some and pour on your leftover mango. This could go on pies or ice cream or a tropical fruit salad. Don’t put yourself in a box with this syrup!
Serve this bread pudding warm with the coconut syrup. This dessert feels light like it won’t weigh you down while you’re swimming in the pool or hitting the beach volleyball courts. Or whatever you do in the summer. You wanna know what I do? I drink Piña Coladas until the leaves start to change.
And for those picky eaters? My husband despises fruit desserts and mango. This is what his plate looked like after I plopped a mound of bread pudding down. Taste testing is hard work! He went back for seconds. Happy puddin’ making!