Poutinga (Πουτίγκα)

IMG_1348-1Poutinga is the Greek answer to bread pudding. My take on Poutinga inspired by the Corfu (most common) version. Other versions can be found from Santorini.

It used to be that regional dishes of Greece were only to be found in it’s area of origin but in this day & age, word travels fast, distances shortened, more travel, more exchange of info and ideas. IMG_1331-1

During my vacation to Greece this past summer, I noticed how much in common Greeks from all regions have (despite our marginal tribalism) and it was interesting to see regional dishes enjoyed throughout Greece.

Poutinga was one of those dishes. Again, this is a Greek ode to bread pudding and it adheres to the Greek cooking philosophy of wasting nothing/utilizing everything.IMG_1344

Poutingas get the best results from using stale/old bread. Nothing as dry as Croutons but day-old kinda stuff works best. You see, you want the bread to suck up as much of the egg and milk mixture as possible.

On this occasion, I used some Tsoureki (Greek Easter Bread) found languishing in the bottom of the freezer. Waste not not- want not. chopped nuts, dried fruits, preserves all are represented in a Poutinga.

I used walnuts, dried currants and black cherry preserve (Vissino) for this Poutinga. Some tang is added with some orange zest and and glaze of apricot jam to provide some yang to the Poutinga’s sweet yin.IMG_1348-1

Poutinga (Πουτίγκα)

butter to grease the oven-proof pan (like a loaf pan or something else of similar size)

1 cup of sugar

6-8 slices of day-old bread (I used Tsoureki)

5 eggs

3 cups of milk

1 Tbsp. of vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups of chopped walnuts

1 1/4 cups of dried currants (or raisins)

approx. 20 preserved black cherries (Vissino)

zest of 1 orange

1/2 cup of apricot jam

juice of 1/2 lemon

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350F. Grease your baking vessel with butter and then sprinkle and line the bottom and sides with sugar. Set aside.
  2. Lightly beat the eggs in a large bowl and add the milk, sugar, orange zest and vanilla and beat until well-incorporated.
  3. Dunk your slices of bread in the egg/milk mixture and begin layering the soaked bread followed by a topping of currants, black cherries and half the walnuts (3/4 cup). Repeat by alternating soaked bread and then fruit (currants and black cherries) and nuts.
  4. Pour any remaining liquid over your layers and sprinkle the top with some sugar.
  5. Place your baking vessel in a “bain-marie” with the hot water two-thirds of the way up and bake in your pre-heated oven for about one hour.
  6. Remove from the oven, allow to cool and then place in the fridge overnight.
  7. The next day, add your apricot jam and lemon juice in a small pot and heat-up until just hot and incorporated. Carefully  turn the Poutinga out of the baking vessel and onto a plate.
  8. Cover with the hot jam and then sprinkle the top with the remaining chopped walnuts.
  9. Serve a slice of the Poutinga with some apricot sauce that’s pooled around the dessert.IMG_1352-1

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© 2007-2009 Peter Minakis

© 2009 – 2010,
Peter Minakis

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39 Comments for “Poutinga (Πουτίγκα)”

says:

What a GReek right … I’ve never made bread pudding the Greek way!! This looks so rich … sinful in fact. Bread pudding, poutinga, definitely a good way to use up ingredients that would otherwise fall to the wayside.

says:

I love poutinga. In Cyprus we make a caramel biscuit pudding and I have it on my blog but last week I made a caramel bread pudding with persimmoms and it was delicious.

says:

you’ve ruined me, peter—i’ll never again be able to look at anything and call it moist. i highly doubt any other creation can even come close to this in levels of density, sogginess, and deliciousness. wow.

says:

A “better than any Cordon Bleu” bread and butter pudding! Adding this to my must make collection.

Not sure if I should thank you for tempting me with sucha a wicked pudding.

says:

It’s funny that you say that there is a commonality to all Greek cuisines. In some ways, all world cuisines have a commonality. Stale bread is something everyone needs to use up at some point and many cultures turn it into bread pudding (or Poutinga or Pain Perdu).

I’m a huge fan of the stuff. I love this version with your mix of flavors and pretty layers.

says:

Use stale festive bread for a festive pudding, of course! (Actually, poutinga sounds an awful lot like pudding, which sounds like boudin anyway…) I love the syrupy goodness!

says:

ok, i love, love, love bread pudding but jonny doesn’t. maybe it’s cause he’s english – it reminds him of horrible buffets. but this looks beautiful and I LOVE the black cherry preserves.

says:

As usual I amazed at your creativity with Greek dishes and the great twists you provide. This tsoureki dessert is amazing…I love all the ingredients!

says:

It is not often that we see a sweet recipe on this site, so this is a special treat, Peter. Talk about a moist cake, wow!!!

says:

About 15 years ago I used to be friends with this girl whose mother made a similar poutiga that i absolutely adored. I was always meaning to get the recipe, but never got round to it. This is really close to the dessert I remember! THANK YOU!

says:

Bread pudding is one of my favorite desserts and I’d make it everyday if I could. Going to have to try this one out and put a little Greek into my kitchen!

Thanks for sharing this,

Bill M.