Savory Bacon & Onion Bread Pudding

By now, most of you now have probably seen the two-ingredient dough recipe floating around all over the internet.  Folks use the it to make lots of things, like pizza crust or pretzels, but the most popular use is bagels.  The bagels (recipe below) make great breakfast sandwiches so I bake them often.  I wish I knew who to give credit for this recipe, but it’s viral Internet information now and somewhere out there is a two-ingredient genius!

Anyway, I’ve been on a bread pudding kick.  I recently made a protein-packed cinnamon vanilla bread pudding.  It got me thinking about a savory bread pudding, as opposed to the traditional sweet versions.  It just so happened that, when I had this brainstorm, I had just baked up some two-ingredient bagels a couple days before.  Naturally, I immediately started experimenting, using the bagels as the base for the recipe.  I decided the best version of savory bread pudding would have to include my favorite 3 ingredients ever:  bacon, onions, and garlic.  Is there a better flavor combination?  No, ma’am, there is not.  It’s the flavor trifecta with an aroma that makes my mouth water every time!  I was right, it’s the perfect savory bread pudding mixture.

Most bread puddings have a sauce or topping of some kind.  I knew right away what I wanted as my topping… an over-easy fried egg that will ooze over the nooks and crannies of the top of the bread, seeping its creamy yolk into the garlicy bacon and onion bread.  I strongly urge you to top your slice with an egg.   I don’t even normally like runny eggs but, as a “sauce” for my bread pudding, it’s amazing (if I do say so myself).  ~Erin

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Here’s a quick rundown of how I make it (more detailed recipe below):

Cook the bagels & tear them up.

savory bread pudding step 1

Chop the bacon, mince the garlic, and dice the onions.  I use this thing to dice onions ALWAYS.  This is the Alligator Chopper and it saves me time and tears.  It’s one of my favorite kitchen gadgets!  I only share my favorites with y’all, promise.  Get yours here:  Alligator Chopper

Cook the bacon, onions, and garlic….. Mmmmmm

Mix it all with the bread and sprinkle on the cheese.

Whisk the custard ingredients together in a small bowl and pour them over the bread.

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Bake it, slice it, top it with an egg (if you like), and enjoy!

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Savory Bacon & Onion Bread Pudding
    Ingredients for Two-Ingredient Bagels:
  • ~ ½ c. self-rising flour (I use Gold Medal brand)
  • ~ ½ c. plain non-fat Greek yogurt
  • ~ dash of salt, optional
  • ~ 1 egg, beaten
    Ingredients for Savory Bacon & Onion Bread Pudding:
  • ~ 2 baked and cooled bagels (instructions for bagels are below)
  • ~ 5 slices center cut bacon (I use Oscar Mayer), sliced in small pieces
  • ~ 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • ~ 1 – 2 cloves garlic, minced (I suggest only one, if they are large cloves.)
  • ~ 2 eggs
  • ~ 1 c. fat free half & half
  • ~ ¼ tsp. salt
  • ~ ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • ~ 3 T. shredded parmesan cheese (not the powdery stuff)
  1. Instructions for making the bagels:
  2. Make the bagels the night before the bread pudding.
  3. To make the bagels, begin by combining the flour, salt, and non-fat Greek yogurt. I use a rubber spatula and just keep scraping and working it together until it forms a ball.
  4. Divide the dough into 2 portions and work each portion into a 1-inch “snake” by rolling it between your palms; connect the ends to make a circle.
  5. Brush each bagel top with beaten egg (or just dip them in it).
  6. Bake on the top rack of a preheated 375°F oven, on a parchment lined sheet pan, for 25 minutes; or bake in your air fryer (LINK TO AMAZON?) at 330°F for 11-12 minutes.
  7. After they cool, cut them open and toast them slightly in the oven, toaster, or air fryer. This step helps dry out the bread.
  8. Tear the bagels into small pieces and spread in a loaf pan or small casserole dish.
  9. Cover loosely and leave out overnight to dry further.
  10. Instructions for making the bread pudding:
  11. Cook bacon in a nonstick skillet over medium-low heat, stirring often, until the bacon pieces brown.
  12. Reduce heat to low and add the onions and garlic; cook and stir often until the onions become translucent (about 5 minutes).
  13. Mix the bacon, onion, garlic mixture into the dry bagel pieces.
  14. Sprinkle the parmesan over the top.
  15. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, half & half, salt, and pepper; pour the egg mixture over the bread/bacon mixture.
  16. At this point, I preheat the oven to 350°F. The bread pudding needs to sit a while so the custard will soak into the dried bread. I’d say at least 20 minutes but it’s fine if you need to let it sit longer (just make sure to refrigerate it in the meantime). Let it come back to room temperature before baking if it’s been refrigerated.
  17. Bake in the preheated oven for 50 minutes.*
  18. Serve warm. Perfect topped with an over-easy egg.

Weight Watchers Info.: This recipe makes 4 servings. Each serving is 4 SmartPoints on the WW Freestyle plan.

https://foursistersdish.com/2018/08/09/savory-bacon-onion-bread-pudding/

*This could also be cooked in the air fryer but I have not tested times and temps yet.  I’d try 350° for 10 minutes, to start with, but that’s just a guess.  If you try it, let me know how it works!  Or I’ll try it soon myself.  I was just too anxious to share this recipe to test it in the air fryer first.

 

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Roasted Garlic Hummus

I LOVE hummus.  I often eat it for lunch or a snack with homemade pita chips.  My favorite hummus flavor is roasted garlic.  For years, I bought the prepackaged kind but, in an effort to cut down on the grocery bill, I have started making many of the snacks I used to just buy.  Making it yourself is WAY cheaper and just as good (or better!).  You can store it in the fridge for up to 5 days so it makes a great snack throughout the week!  ~Erin

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Roasted Garlic Hummus
    Ingredients
  • ~ 1 (16 oz.) can garbanzo beans (a.k.a. chick peas)
  • ~ 1-2 tsp. fresh lemon juice (I admit I don’t really measure the lemon juice, I just squirt some in.)
  • ~ 3 tsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • ~ 1 head of garlic
  • ~ ½ tsp. cumin
  • ~ ¼ tsp. salt (or more, to taste)
  • ~ 2-3 T. water, depending on how thick or thin you like it
  • ~ Optional: more olive oil and/or dehydrated garlic for garnish
  1. Cut off the pointy end of the head of garlic, to expose the cloves.
  2. Place it in the center of a double layer of foil & drizzle it with 1 tsp. olive oil.
  3. Wrap the head of garlic with the foil, enclosing it completely.
  4. Roast in the oven at 400°F for 30-40 minutes, or until it feels soft when squeezed. You can also roast it in the air fryer at 400° for 20 minutes, if you are lucky enough to have an air fryer. I love mine! (I’ll share more about it another time.) Set aside to cool.
  5. Drain and rinse the garbanzo beans. Remove the skins by pinching them between your fingers.*
  6. When the garlic is cool, squeeze it all into the bowl of a food processor. Make sure you don’t accidentally drop in the papery garlic skins.
  7. Add the garbanzo beans, lemon juice, remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil, cumin, salt.
  8. Blend until well combined, scraping the sides often, adding a Tablespoon of water at a time, until the hummus is smooth.
  9. Garnish each serving with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of dehydrated garlic, if desired.

Weight Watchers Info.: This makes about a cup of hummus. Each ¼ cup serving is 1 Freestyle SmartPoint.

*It helps loosen the garbanzo bean skins if you shake them around in the colander while rinsing them. Then pinch the beans between your fingers and the skin should slide right off. This is a bit time consuming but removing the skins will make your hummus so much smoother. It’s a great activity for the kids! I mean, why do we even have kids if not to do the jobs we don’t want to do?! That’s a joke… sort of. Pretty sure my dad didn’t have to get up and change the TV channel ever in his adult life. Clearly, I’m showing my age. We had no remote but we only had 4 channels so, luckily, the manual channel surfing didn’t take long. I digress.

https://foursistersdish.com/2018/07/19/roasted-garlic-hummus/

Parmesan Crusted Potatoes

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We are a potato loving family.  We love them mashed, roasted, fried, baked… you name it.  My kids’ favorite is mashed (not surprisingly) but I like variety.  These Parmesan Crusted Potatoes are one of my favorites.  The salty, crunchy crust on the tender potatoes is TO DIE FOR.  I could make a meal out of these.  They take just a few minutes to prep, so I like that I can make these first and pop them in the oven to cook while I make the rest of supper.  Serve hot with some chives & sour cream or ranch dressing.  These are 4 Weight Watchers SmartPoints per serving… the challenge is eating just one serving!

~Erin

 

Ingredients:

1 ½ lbs. baby red potatoes

½ c. shredded parmesan cheese

¼ tsp. garlic salt

½ T. garlic powder

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil

Cooking spray

Coarse kosher salt

Chopped chives, optional garnish (I buy the lightly dried kind.  They last longer.)

Sour cream or buttermilk ranch for dipping, optional

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Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Spray a shallow baking dish with non-stick spray.

Wash potatoes & pat dry.

Cut each potato in half and set aside.

In a small bowl, mix shredded parmesan, garlic salt, & garlic powder; mix in olive oil, stirring to coat.

Spread the parmesan mixture evenly on the bottom of baking dish or small sheet pan.

Place the potatoes, cut side down, on top of the parmesan.

Spray the tops with cooking spray and sprinkle lightly with kosher salt.

Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until tender & golden.

Scrape potatoes off the pan with a metal spatula, being careful to loosen parmesan along with the potatoes.

Sprinkle with chives & serve with ranch or sour cream, if desired.
Weight Watchers info:  This recipe makes 6 servings at 4 SmartPoints each, not including optional dipping sauce.

Dutch Oven Garlic Cheese Pull-part Rolls

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Kathy spends as much time as she possibly can camping with her family in the mountains near her home each summer.   One of her favorite things to do is to cook outdoors in her dutch ovens.   She has had lots of practice so she and her family can testify that these are worth the effort.  If you don’t have a dutch oven, or don’t want to cook outside, these can be made in a bundt pan or angel food cake pan in the oven.

Ingredients:

12 Rhodes frozen rolls (Texas rolls recommended)

¾ c. melted butter

½ c. parmesan cheese (grated or powdered)

1 T flour

2 T garlic powder

Instructions:

Line a 12” dutch oven with a flat lid with foil and spray with non-stick spray.

Parchment paper will also work.

Thaw rolls just until softened.

In a gallon sized zip top bag combine cheese, flour and garlic powder.

Cut each roll into fourths.

Roll each piece of roll into the melted butter; then coat in dry ingredients, shaking several at a time in the bag to coat.

Place rolls in dutch oven; place the lid on and allow to sit in a warm area for about 30 minutes to rise.

While they are rising light charcoal.

To bake with charcoal, use 12 coals on bottom and 24 on top.  Rotate the lid and pot different directions each 15 minutes to ensure even baking.

Bake rolls for  35 – 40 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through.

If cooking in the oven, place rolls in a sprayed bundt pan or angel food cake pan with non-stick spray.

Bake in a preheated 350˚ oven for 35 – 40 minutes.

Italian Beef Sandwiches

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These sandwiches are the easiest thing you will ever make (even if you’ve never cooked a meal in your life, you can make these) and people will think you slaved in the kitchen.  This beef is fall-apart tender and melt-in-your mouth delicious.  5 ingredients and prep time is less than 5 minutes.  Set it and forget it!

Ingredients:

3 pounds top round (or similar cut) beef roast

2 or 3 cloves minced garlic

1 (0.6 oz.) packet Good Seasons dry Zesty Italian dressing mix

1 (16 oz.) jar whole or sliced pepperoncini peppers

8 to 10 ounces fat-free Zesty Italian dressing

Buns for serving

Cheese for sandwiches, optional

Instructions:

Place roast in a slow cooker.

Top with garlic and dry zesty Italian seasoning mix.

Discard all but about a quarter of the juice out of pepperoncini jar; pour remaining juice and all the peppers over the roast.

Pour in liquid zesty Italian dressing.

Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours or high for 3-4, or until meat is fully cooked and shreds easily.

Shred the beef & serve it hot on a toasted bun with the cheese of your choice.

*The beef/pepper mixture calculates to 5 Weight Watchers Smartpoints per 4 ounce serving.

Spicy Italian Chicken & Artichoke Pasta

All four of us love spicy food, and if you do too, you’ll know how annoying it is that most things marked “spicy” in restaurants are really fairly bland.  After many frustrating Italian restaurant visits (thank goodness for Tiramisu), Robin and Barry decided to come up with their own perfect pasta. Barry tinkered in the kitchen, ending up with a hybrid of some favorite Italian dishes.  This creamy, savory pasta is serious comfort food.  And the best part is, we can set some aside for the kids — or guests with low-spice-tolerant palates — and (cayenne!!!) pepper our portions to our hearts’ content.  

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Ingredients:

4-6 chicken tenders, depending on size, diced

1/4 cup canned sliced mushrooms, drained (we use Giorgio)

1/2 cup dry, julienned sun dried tomatoes (thoroughly rinsed if packed in oil)*

1 15-oz. can artichoke hearts, drained, then quartered  

1 tsp. Italian seasoning

2 cloves minced fresh garlic (could use jarred garlic, but we prefer fresh)

3 T. butter

For Sauce:

1 15-oz. jar roasted garlic Alfredo sauce (We use Classico)

1 ½  cups finely shredded parmesan cheese

⅓ cup milk

¼ to ¾ tsp. of cayenne pepper, aka “red pepper” (depending on heat preference)

8 oz. farfalle (bowtie pasta) — half the box of Barilla that we usually use

3-4 sliced green onions

Instructions: 

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*The Bella Sun Luci sun-dried tomatoes pictured here are strongly recommended…far superior to those packed in oil both in terms of mess and flavor as far as we’re concerned, but if you’ve found a favorite that’s in oil, that’ll do too!  We normally do fresh garlic, but this is the jarred brand we use if the pantry is lacking the fresh variety.  If you’ve never bought fresh garlic, it keeps much longer than you’d think.

Prepare farfalle per box instructions.

In a small pot, put all sauce ingredients on low heat, stir occasionally while preparing chicken portion (be sure not to let it stick).  

In a large skillet heat butter and garlic on low. Add chicken and Italian seasoning. Increase heat to medium. When chicken begins to brown, add mushrooms, artichokes, and sun-dried tomatoes, heat on medium high for two to three minutes. Add sauce. Simmer for 2-3 minutes stirring occasionally.

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At this point, it’s hard not to just eat this as is, but it’s worth the wait to put it all together.

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Serve over farfalle; top with green onions.  We like to add a little more ground cayenne pepper too, both for a touch of color and, of course, some spice.