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Chef Kevin's Recipes: Mushroom and Leek Bread Pudding, Melting Sweet Potatoes

Delicious Chef Kevin Belton recipes.
Credit: wwltv

NEW ORLEANS — Mushroom and Leek Bread Pudding

1 loaf French bread, dried out

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 Tbsp. butter, plus 8 Tbsp. butter, melted

4 leeks, sliced

1 1/2 pounds shiitake or portobello mushrooms, sliced

2 Tbsp. Creole seasoning

1 Tbsp. thyme, fresh

1/4 cup dry wine

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/3 cup parsley, chopped

4 eggs

2 cups heavy cream

1-2 cups chicken stock

1 1/2 cups Gruyere cheese, grated and divided

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the oil and butter in a large saute pan over medium heat. Stir in the leeks and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until the leeks are tender. Stir in the mushrooms, Creole seasoning, thyme, wine, 1 tablespoon salt and 11/2 teaspoons pepper and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until most of the liquid evaporates, stirring occasionally. Off the heat, stir in the parsley.

In a large mixing bowl break up French bread, mix in eggs, cream, 1 cup chicken stock. Add enough stock until you have the texture of oatmeal. Stir in melted butter, then add 1 cup of the Gruyere the mushroom mixture, stirring well to combine. Spray or butter a baking pan, and pour in bread pudding. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup Gruyere and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the top is browned and the custard is set. Serve hot.

Melting Sweet Potatoes

4 Tbsp. butter

2 Tbsp. olive oil

4 sweet potatoes, peeled, ends trimmed and sliced into 3/4-inch-thick rounds

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock

2 Tbsp. cane syrup

6 sprigs fresh thyme

10 large marshmallows, cut in half crosswise

Put the racks in the top and center positions and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Heat the butter and olive oil in a large cast-iron or ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the potatoes in a single layer, then sprinkle with a good pinch of salt and several grinds of black pepper. Cook until the first side is golden brown, about 4 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix the stock, cane syrup, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small liquid measuring cup until combined. Flip the potatoes, then pour the mixture over and top with the fresh thyme.

Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake on the center rack until the potatoes are very tender and the broth mixture has reduced slightly, 20 to 25 minutes.

Remove the skillet from the oven and preheat the broiler to high. Top each piece of potato with a marshmallow half, cut-side down. Broil on the top rack until the marshmallows are puffed and lightly toasted, about 1 minute. They can easily burn.

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