Caramel Apple Breakfast Pudding
2 large tart apples - such Granny Smith
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons light-colored corn syrup
2 tablespoons margarine or butter
1/4 cup pecan pieces
3 beaten eggs
1 1/4 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
8 slices Italian or French bread - 1/2-inch-thick
A luscious caramel-pecan layer starts on the bottom and ends on top. Peel, core, and slice apples (should have 2 cups). In a small saucepan combine apple slices and 1/4 cup water. Bring to boil; reduce heat. Cook, covered, over medium-low heat for 5 to 7 minutes or till apples are tender, stirring occasionally. Drain in a colander. Transfer apples to a small bowl. Gently stir cinnamon into cooked apples. Set aside. In the same small saucepan combine brown sugar, light-colored corn syrup, and margarine or butter. Cook and stir over medium heat till mixture just comes to a boil. Remove from heat. Pour mixture into a 2-quart square baking dish. Sprinkle pecans over all.
In a medium mixing bowl combine the eggs, milk, vanilla, and nutmeg. Arrange a layer of half the bread slices in the baking dish atop the caramel mixture, trimming bread to fit. Spoon cooked apples evenly over bread layer. Arrange remaining bread slices on top. Carefully pour the egg mixture over bread, pressing the bread down gently to moisten the slices completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or up to 24 hours. At serving time, remove the plastic wrap. Bake, uncovered, in a 325o oven for 40 to 45 minutes or till a knife comes out clean. Remove from oven; run a knife around edge to loosen. Let stand for 15 minutes. Carefully invert pudding onto a platter. (Spoon any remaining caramel mixture in dish over pudding.) Cut into triangles. Serve warm or cool. Makes 8 servings.