1 loaf French bread, about 24 in. long, torn into chunks and allowed to air dry for at least 8 hours
2 tsp. butter
1/3 c. golden raisins
4 Tbsp. dark rum
3 tart apples (Granny Smith or Empire) cored and cubed
3 1/2 c. milk
5 extra-large eggs, lightly whisked
1 c. whipping cream
1 1/2 c. apple butter
1/2 stick of butter, melted
For the sauce:
12 Tbsp. butter
1 1/3 c. confectioners’ sugar
4 egg yolks
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
6 Tbsp. Calvados (apple brandy)
Pre-heat the oven to 350°F/180°C.
Place the raisins and rum in a small sauce pan. Warm over moderate heat until almost all the rum has evaporated and the raisins are plump.
Place the torn bread into a buttered 9x13-in. baking pan. Add the cubed apples and raisins and toss to distribute evenly.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk, eggs, whipping cream and apple butter. Pour over the bread mixture. Let the bread pudding rest and absorb the liquid for at least one hour.
Drizzle the bread pudding with the melted butter and place the baking pan in a larger pan to create a water bath. The water should rise half way up the sides of the baking pan.
Place both pans into the oven. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted into the center of the pudding comes out clean and the center is firm.
Remove from the oven and let rest for 15 - 20 minutes. Meanwhile, make Calvados sauce.
Cream the butter and the sugar together in a medium sauce pan. Add the egg yolks one at a time, then add 1/4 cup of the cream. Set the pan over medium low heat. Gradually add the remaining cream, stirring constantly.
The sauce is done when it thickens just enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add the Calvados and stir.
Spoon warm bread pudding into bowls and serve with the warm Calvados sauce.