If someone were to point a gun to my head and tell me I had to choose a favourite ethnic cuisine, I am pretty certain that I would pick Thai food. Many of my friends would pick Mexican, and while I love many aspects of Mexican cuisine, the flavours don't excite me quite as much as Thai. I fell hard and fast for Thai food upon my first time at a restaurant in the ultra-hip Jamaica Plain neighbourhood of Boston. If my memory serves me, I had a stuffed-up nose, and the spicy curry I ordered was the first thing I had tasted in days. It cut through my congestion like butter, and we were fast friends from that point forward.
So you can imagine my response when the good folks at Thai Kitchen asked if I wanted to test out some of their products. I believe it was along the lines of "hell, yeah!". I may or may not have divulged to them that I didn't exactly have to "test out" their products, since I had several of them already in my pantry and fridge. But more are always welcome! Quite a number of their products are gluten-free, and quite a few thai recipes can be made low carb, which is very much in line with what I do on this blog. So I was more than happy to have some ingredients to play around with.
Much of what they sent me lends itself mostly to savoury dishes. If ever you are wondering what to do with a jar of red or green curry paste, their website has a wonderful collection of recipes. Casting around for dinner ideas one night, I decided to make their Green Curry Chicken with Basil , except that I substituted tofu for the chicken and I didn't add basil because I didn't have any. To make it lower in carbs, I didn't add any brown sugar, and my husband and I both agreed that it didn't seem lacking without it. He ate his over some of their jasmine rice and I had mine without. It was a wonderful meal.
But, being as that I am primarily a baker, I also wanted to find a way to make something sweet with their products. They had sent along a recipe for a coconut pumpkin bread pudding that made me drool, but bread pudding is neither low carb nor gluten free. Or is it? I got to thinking about what I could do with this and was reminded of a few recipes I'd saved from other places. One was for Coconut Flour Bread and one was for a Thai Coconut Custard. It all seemed to be coming together into one lovely, low carb, gluten free bread pudding in my head.The Results:
If you love the flavour of coconut, you will love this bread pudding. Made with coconut flour, coconut milk and shredded coconut (and even with coconut oil, if you wish), it is seriously coconutty. I just love it, and was quite impressed by how the coconut flour bread held up as a base for the bread pudding. The coconut flavour is enhanced by the addition of vanilla and cardamom, and it's a lovely exotic twist on a western classic dessert.
When the pudding is warm from the oven, the cream sauce tends to absorb right in, which is why you don't really see it in the pictures. I had wanted photographs with nice dribbles of the cream poured over the pudding, but it was not to be. It just kept getting sopped right up. But it is there, and it really adds to the whole dessert, so don't skip it if you make this! Thai Coconut Bread Pudding with Vanilla Cardamom Cream
1 loaf coconut flour bread - see recipe HERE
1 can Thai Kitchen Coconut Milk
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup granulated erythritol
16 drops stevia extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tsp coarsely ground cardamom
1 tsp vanilla extract
12 drops stevia extract
For the pudding, preheat oven to 200F. Slice coconut bread into 1/2 inch slices and lay on a baking sheet. Let bread dry out in oven for about an hour. Cut into 1/2 inch cubes and set aside.
Increase oven temperature to 350F and grease an 8x8 inch glass baking dish.
Pour coconut milk into a large bowl and whisk until smooth. Add eggs, erythritol, stevia, vanilla, allspice and cardamom and whisk to combine well. Add bread cubes and toss until well coated. Let stand 10 minutes to allow bread to soak up coconut milk mixture.
Pour into prepared baking dish and sprinkle with pecans and shredded coconut. Bake 35-40 minutes or until custard is set and tester inserted into center comes out clean. Cool slightly on wire rack.
Meanwhile, bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat and add cardamom, vanilla and stevia, stirring to combine. Let steep for 30 minutes, then pour through a fine sieve to remove solids.
Pour cream over individual servings of bread pudding, passing any remaining cream at the table.
Serves 10. Each serving has a total of 18g of carbs, but only 6g of carbs if you subtract for erythritol and fiber.