Food For Thought: Waste Not Want Not Pudding

I made bread crumb pudding for the opening party of Welcome Back Ye Annunaki at Victoria’s Open Space.

Dear Ye Annunaki,

You might have heard that there is a food shortage here on planet earth. It’s all lies, lies, lies. There is in fact enough food for everyone and this shared meal is proof of that. None the less, some of us who live in the wealthier nations on the planet have a nasty habit of being wasteful. We throw out perfectly good food, while we let others go hungry.  I want to show you that we’re not all like that, so I made this pudding from bread crumbs saved in my freezer. Yes, bread crumbs… I hope you enjoy it!

All the best,  


I was going to the Friday night opening party for Welcome Back Ye Annunaki at Open Space, and as it was a pot luck supper I needed a dish.  It was 9:00pm Thursday evening, Friday was booked full of appointments, so I had to make it Thursday evening.  I looked in the fridge, I looked in the cupboard and groaned.  There wasn’t much of anything to make anything with as I really did need to go shopping.

“This is going to be one of those empty fridge recipes.”

Then I remembered that beautiful chocolate-caramel bread pudding I’d had on the film shoot (yes, I did a day’s work as a full actor on a film) – and bread pudding would be quite appropriate to take to a pot luck party to welcome back aliens – yes, aliens – the Annunaki are aliens due to return to earth next month – and my brain twitched with an idea “Ahh, I have all those bread crumbs in the freezer…”

So I looked in my recipe books and did an internet search for bread pudding and bread crumb pudding, and started cooking.  These measurements are approximate as I just put together what I had, and improvised as I went along to make up for missing ingredients!

Roasted Pumpkin Bread Pudding
Roasted Pumpkin Bread Pudding (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Beat together in a large bowl:

  • 1 x 370ml can partly skimmed evaporated milk
  • 1 can water
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups Demerara sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup molasses


  • 3 medium-sized apples, cored and diced into 1/2″ cubes
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 4-6 cups stale bread broken into cubes and bread crumbs.  I had both in my freezer, most of it home-made, whole wheat porridge bread, a few slices store-bought whole wheat, a few slices white rye, and most of a loaf of bread I’d made that hadn’t turned out.

Quantities are all guesstimates – all the ingredients filled a bowl 7.5 inches diameter x 5 inches deep.   In fact I could have used a bigger bowl as when I added the ginger water (next ingredient) I had to turn some of it into the saucepan to mix, then turn it back into the bowl – it was messy!  Then I read a blog recipe from a woman who mixed and baked her whole pudding in the same Pyrex container! But hey, I was improvising.

Let the bread soak till it sinks (crumbs will be instantly dissolved)


  • turn the oven on to preheat to 350F
  • and simmer together in small saucepan (about 5 minutes):
    • 2-4 T finely chopped fresh ginger (I peeled and chopped up about a 2 inch stick)
    • 1 cup of water.  You want to infuse the water with the ginger flavour.
  • Add ginger water to bread mixture and let stand for about an hour, stirring frequently and removing any bread bits that don’t soak up the liquid (I had a few from the loaf of bread that hadn’t turned out)
  • Turn into greased Pyrex baking dishes (preferably with lids), and bake for about 45 minutes at 350 then turn the oven down to 300 and bake another 45 minutes, removing the lids for the last 15-20 minutes.

That’s what I did and it was delicious.  The quantities made enough for 2 x 7.5 inch Pyrex baking dishes, and 1 x 5.5. (Measure the dishes diagonally, corner to corner.)

I ate the small pudding fresh from the oven (a late supper?) gave 1/2 a pudding to my mother, put 1/2 a pudding in the freezer and took 1 pudding to the party, cut into small slices (2 fingers).  I was thinking slices big  enough for people to have a taste, not so big they’d be embarrassed if they didn’t like it.  Besides, bread pudding really needs some kind of sauce.  Though I have been eating this cold, sliced and spread with butter!

  • Don’t throw out those bread crumbs left in the bottom of the bag, or those last few slices that have lost their ‘freshness’.
  • What to do with all those crumbs lying on the bread board after cutting a slice of bread?
  • Tip them into a plastic bag, seal and store in the freezer until you have enough to make…


“A while ago, I found an ebook of a cookbook from 1918 called “Foods that Will Win the War.”

…the authors of the books said that if every one of the nation’s 20,000,000 homes wasted one slice of bread a day, that equaled 319,000,000 pounds of flour a year. I have been guilty of throwing out heels of bread.

I have never once thought of the cumulative amount of bread thrown out daily. It certainly gave me something to think about!!!”

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