Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce
- 1 1/4-lb. loaf challah bread
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 3/4 cup half-and-half
- 3/4 cup mashed overripe bananas, about 2 large
- 1 1/2 cups maple syrup
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 3 to 4 gratings fresh nutmeg
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
- Caramel Sauce
- Cut bread into 3/4-inch slices. Trim away crust, then cut bread into 3/4-inch cubes, to make 8 cups.
- Set aside any additional for another use. Place bread in large bowl.
- In separate medium bowl, whisk eggs until well beaten.
- Whisk in milk, half-and-half, banana, maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla.
- Pour mixture over bread. Add chocolate chips.
- Mix with rubber spatula until bread is well moistened. Set aside for 30 minutes.
- Set rack in center of oven. Preheat oven to 390 °F.
- Lightly coat an 18-inch round, nonstick cake pan (or deep-dish glass pie plate) with cooking spray.
- Scoop soaked bread mixture into pan, filling it to top.
- Bake until top is browned and puffed, and knife inserted into center comes out clean, about 50 minutes.
- Set on wire rack until almost completely cool. Run sharp, thin knife around edge between pudding and pan.
- Gently unmold pudding onto plate, then invert it back onto another plate, so browned side is up.
- To serve, cut pudding, lukewarm or at room temperature, into 4 wedges.
- Pour warm Caramel Sauce over and serve, with dollop of whipped cream if desired.