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Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Today I finally was able to go to the pumpkin patch! Yes, it was twenty degrees cooler than it has been all week (chilly!) and, yes, it was overcast and drizzly all day…but, we had a great time – really! I went with the homeschoolers from our church….we learned about bees, visited the baby animals, played in the hay barn (the best!) and, of course, chose our favorite pumpkin from the patch. I definitely tend toward the round ones, bright orange with just a bit of imperfection. It was a great day.

Of course, I love anything and everything pumpkin…cookies, muffins, pancakes and this yummy recipe for Pumpkin Bread Pudding. If you like bread pudding, this one is a must!!

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

1 loaf (16 oz) raisin bread
1 small orange
1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
1 can (15 oz) solid pack pumpkin
1/2 cup plus 3 TBL sugar, divided
3 eggs
1 1/2 TBL cinnamon (or pumpkin pie spice)
1/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray square baking dish with PAM. Slice bread into 1-inch cubes; set aside. Zest orange and set aside.

2. Pour evaporated milk into microwaveable dish and microwave on HIGH for 3 minutes until hot. In medium bowl, whisk pumpkin, 1/2 cup of the sugar, eggs, cinnamon and orange zest until smooth. Gradually whisk hot milk into pumpkin mixture.

3. Place half of the bread cubes over bottom of baking dish; pour half of the pumpkin mixture over bread. Top with remaining bread cubes and remaining pumpkin mixture. Sprinkle chopped nuts evenly over bread. Sprinkle with remaining 3 TBLs sugar.

4. Bake 25-30 minutes or until set. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Serve with whipped topping, if desired.

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