Field Notes

Recipe: Anaheim Pepper Corn Bread Pudding

This recipe is an improvement on the frequently dry squares of jalapeño-cheddar cornbread that come with your bowl of chili. Roasted Anaheim chilis, hot sauce, and Monterey Jack cheese commingle with leftover cornbread in egg and cream bath before being baked into a custardy-on-the-inside-crispy-on-the-outside pudding. Serve it with short ribs for a bone-sticking cold weather meal, or make it the main course with a side of avocado-cucumber salad. You could also add bacon or crumbled sausage to the batter to make it even heartier.

If your cornbread is fresh, place the crumbles in a baking sheet and toast in a 400° oven on the lowest rack for 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool completely before using.

Anaheim Pepper Corn Bread Pudding

Serves 8

  • 1 pound Anaheim chilies
  • 6 cups crumbled stale cornbread
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated red onion
  • 1 ½ cups (12 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Preheat the broiler.

Arrange the peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet and set on the middle rack of the oven. Roast, turning every 5 to 6 minutes, until the skin is blistered and charred. Transfer the peppers to a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the skin, stems and seeds from the peppers and dice into ½-inch tiles. Season with ½ teaspoon salt and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, milk and eggs. Add the hot sauce, salt, pepper, red onion, cheese, and reserved peppers. Add the cornbread to the bowl and mix well to coat the cornbread in the custard. Let sit, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350° convection. Grease a 13x9 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Pour the bread pudding into the dish and distribute evenly. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.