Kale & Leek Bread Pudding

by Sherri Koehler on May 14, 2014

A few years ago I was inspired to make a savory bread pudding after a neighbor gave us a day-old baguette. Since last year’s quest for the perfect quiche base, I’ve wanted to revisit this comfort food favorite and make a few changes. We love the new result and I am happy to offer this new version for the So Delicious Spring Fling Dairy-Free Recipe Contest.

While the recipe calls for a full-size baguette, the equivalent amount of any stale bread will work great. The best versions combine a few dry heels of a different types of bread so you get a big variation in the taste and chewiness of the bread, which is awesome. The version pictured here used the ends of three different bakery loaves: Walnut Whole Wheat and Country Brown, both from Ken’s Artisan Bakery, plus a bit of White Sourdough, from Grand Central Bakery (bakeries noted for folks in or visiting Portland).

The Stuff

  • 1 stale baguette, coarsely cut up
  • 1 medium bunch of kale, washed, stemmed & shredded
  • 2 small leeks, white parts only, sliced thin
  • 1 large carrot, diced small
  • 1 large stalk of celery, diced small
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 2 12.3-ounce packages lite firm silken tofu, drained of water
  • 1/2 cup So Delicious Unsweetened Almond Plus™ 5X almond milk
  • Leaves from 8 stems of parsley, chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons tahini
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black salt* (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1 T champagne vinegar
  • sweet paprika to sprinkle over the top

*Black Salt, or Kala Namak is usually found at a Desi market or a good pan-Asian market that features ingredients popular in Indian and other South Asian cuisines. It is mostly sodium chloride, but it also contains sulfur in addition to the other minerals. It is pink or light purple in color and imparts a more subtle flavor cooked. It can be skipped, just add 1/4 t of sea salt, but it worth the effort to seek it out. If you don’t have any suitable markets in your area, Kala Namak Salt can be purchased online.


The Making

Preheat oven to 375.

In a skillet heat the olive oil on medium-high heat and saute garlic quickly, less than two minutes, until it begins to sizzle. Add in celery, carrots, and leeks. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to sauté until the veggies begin to soften. Add kale, cover and reduce heat to low. Continue to cook, turning occasionally, until kale is softened. After 10 minutes drizzle champagne vinegar into the pan and cover for 5 more minutes. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl add coarsely chopped up bread, fresh parsley, and sautéed vegetables.

Add the remaining ingredients into a blender. Process until mixture is completely smooth, occasionally scraping down the sides to be sure everything is incorporated. Pour this mixture over the bread and vegetables. Mix all ingredients together, making sure bread is coated with the tofu-custard.

Spray a 9×13 baking dish with Canola oil. Pour bread, custard and vegetable mixture into dish. Lightly press down so that the pan is evenly filled. Dust top with sweet paprika.

Put pan into the oven and immediately reduce heat to 350. Bake for 35 minutes. Remove from oven and cool five minutes before cutting and serving.

Makes 12 servings.

Nutritional Info

Serving Size: 1 slice
Calories: 171
Total Fat: 4 g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 0g
Sodium: 241 mg (10%)
Carbohydrates: 25 g
Dietary Fiber: 3 g
Sugars: 3 g
Protein: 11 g

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