Warm panettone and butter pudding with hot whisky or rum syrup and cold ice cream

“Many thanks for a fun evening together last night. Bread and butter pudding especially delicious. Did you say that you used panettone for the bread?”

It’s late December, and there must be a fair few of you out there with a panettone in tow, and a blank look.

I don’t know why people give panattones…. they always seem uninteresting and dry. It may be because they have been draped from the ceiling of an Italian restaurant for months. The bright, illustrated, boxes always look so promising, but the innards never fail to disappoint. But it’s a gift…it can’t be thrown away. What to do?

The thing is to recognise this gifthorse for what it essentially is: dry bread. And what would you do with dry bread (aside from making a panzanella)? It would go into a bread and butter pudding. With raisins and extra alcoholic syrup just for good measure. And ice cream for more good measure. The bread effectively becomes the foundation which absorbs all these rich goodies, and it morphs, as my dinner guests last night comment, into being something that is ‘especially delicous’…sort of Cinderella really being able to go to the ball after all!

This will freeze – in which case be careful not to over cook it, and remember it will still need the syrup and the ice cream.

It’s incredibly robust. I left some out by mistake for a whole week! It went a bit dry, but I warmed it up with some marsala, and it was still excellent with the ice cream!

For a rum and chocolate bread and butter pudding, click on this link.

For a St Patrick’s boozy bread and butter pudding, click on this link.

And for What You Really Need To Know About Choosing Vanilla Ice Cream, Some On Offer Should Be Illegal, follow this link.


Recipe for warm panettone and butter pudding with hot whisky or rum syrup and cold ice cream

Serves 8


  • 750g/1 lb 10 oz Panettone
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 120 ml/½ cup whisky or dark rum
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tbsp golden caster sugar
  • 480 ml/2 cups milk
  • 300 ml/1¼ cups double cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • 2 tbsps raisins
  • 80 ml runny honey
  • Good quality vanilla ice cream


  1. Soak the raisins in a small bowl with a tablespoon of whisky or rum
  2. Slice the panettone into wedges.
  3. Butter one side only of each wedge.
  4. Place the wedges into a large, shallow oven-proof dish, in one layer but slightly overlapping.
  5. Moisten with 4 tbsps/¼ cup of whisky or rum.
  6. In a large mixing bowl mix together the eggs and sugar, using an electric whisk. Add the milk, the cream and the vanilla paste.
  7. Pour the soaked raisins over the panettone, and then the egg mixture. Leave for half an hour.
  8. Heat the oven to 180ºC.
  9. Put the panettone dish into a large roasting tin, and fill the tin with water up to about halfway up the panettone dish. Cook for about half an hour if you are planning to freeze – the bread should just be turning golden. If you are planning to eat immediately, cook for a few more minutes. Take out and leave to rest while you eat the rest of your meal, but keep the pudding warm. Add an extra dab or two of butter to soak into the panattone.
  10. Meanwhile warm up the honey with a tablespoon or two of whisky or rum.
  11. Serve the pudding with the hot syrup and cold ice cream.


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