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Kevin dundon pear bread and butter pudding
Harry Weir

Pear Bread and Butter Pudding

Kevin Dundon's Irish recipe is a perfectly homely dessert.

Serving: 6
Time: 1hr 30mins +
Difficulty: Medium


For the syrup:

  • 220g sugar
  • 50ml water
  • 1 orange, juice and peel
  • 1 vanilla pod

For the pudding:

  • 250g sliced pan or brioche, sliced
  • 50g Glenilen butter at room temperature plus extra to grease the baking dish
  • 4 eggs
  • 55g sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 30ml fresh cream
  • 25ml milk

For the pears:

  • 4 pears
  • 100ml cream
  • 2 shots Coole Swan liqueur
  • 1 tablespoon icing sugar
  • 50g 70% Wilde Irish chocolate, grated

For the crème anglaise:

  • 500ml fresh cream
  • 1 vanilla pod, split lengthways
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 120g caster sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
  2. For the syrup, place the ingredients into a saucepan and bring to the boil. In the meantime, peel the pears, keeping the stem and trimming off the bottom so they can stand upright. Place the pears in the simmering syrup and cook for 25-30 minutes or until tender. Retain the syrup for use later.
  3. Meanwhile, to make the pudding, spread a little butter onto one side of the bread, then cut into triangles.
  4. Then, in a large bowl, whisk together the eggs with the sugar, add the cinnamon, cream and milk, and whisk to combine.
  5. Grease a baking dish of approximately 2 litre capacity (about 24cm squared). Place a layer of bread, buttered side up, on the base of the baking dish. Place the four pears upright on the layer of bread. Then, layer the remaining bread slices around the pears. Pour the egg mixture onto the bread and pears, then leave to soak for 20 minutes. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until well coloured.
  6. Remove from the oven, wait for five minutes, then brush the pudding with the remaining syrup. Return to the oven for about five minutes.
  7. While the pudding is baking, prepare the cream. Whip the cream until it reaches soft peaks, then add the Coole Swan and icing sugar. Fold in the grated chocolate at the last minute.
  8. For the crème anglaise, put the vanilla pod and the cream into a saucepan over a medium heat and bring to the boil. Once boiled, remove from the heat and allow to infuse with the vanilla. Beat the egg yolks and sugar until thick and then add in the vanilla infused cream. Return the entire mixture to the pot and slowly cook over a gentle heat, stirring continuously until the egg custard has thickened (ie. coats the back of the spoon). Remove from the heat, pass through a fine sieve. 
  9. Serve the pear pudding warm with a dollop of Coole Swan cream and the crème anglaise.

Recipe: Kevin Dundon

Photography: Harry Weir, assisted by Brian Clarke

For more Kevin Dundon recipes, click here.


  • This is a classic and homely dessert but the addition of the sweet pear makes it more interesting. Of course, you can also use currants or raisins instead. Coole Swan liqueur has nice vanilla and chocolate notes that work really well with the cream and pudding.
  • Crème anglaise isn’t essential for this dessert but we think it really works. The vital element when making it is to ensure you remove the cream from the heat before adding the eggs.