Sunday, June 24, 2018

Guest Marian Stanley and her Amazing Caramel-Whiskey Bread Pudding

Mystery Lovers' Kitchen is delighted to welcome Marian Stanley as our guest today (failte romhat!). I may be a little biased--Marian is a friend from the Boston area, and in Buried Troubles, her second book, she's writing about both Boston and Ireland (although not the County Cork area I know). It's a delightful read--but then, we know that the Irish are good story-tellers, right? And these days they're good cooks as well.

I don’t think of the story in Buried Troubles, based in Boston and Ireland, as being alcohol-drenched. However, I do mention Irish whiskey a few times (Jameson’s or “Jay”) – usually lacing a cup of tea or maybe a strong cup of coffee after dinner. (I also mention Ipswich Ale in the book, but I don’t have a recipe for that yet!)

So, the combination of a rich bread pudding with a touch of the “Jay” sounds intriguing. To date, my favorite bread pudding has been an orange-chocolate version with a Grand Marnier whipped cream that we’ve had for Christmas sometimes. Now, I think that wonderful dessert has been replaced on my favorites list with this excellent Caramel-Whiskey bread pudding.

I will confess that, after making this dessert, my daughter and I had two helpings each for dinner. (That would not be with dinner, but for dinner.) So, be forewarned. A little dangerous.

I owe full credit for this recipe to Charlotte Song of Mount Lebanon, PA., who served the pudding to the Woodridge Book Club in her home earlier this year.



1/4 cup melted butter
1 (10-ounce) French bread baguette cut into 1-inch slices
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup Irish whiskey
1-3/4 cups milk
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
cooking spray
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Caramel-Whiskey Sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Brush melted butter on one side of French bread slices, and place bread, buttered sides up, on a baking sheet.

Bake bread for 10 minutes or until lightly toasted. 

Cut bread into 1/2-inch cubes, and set aside.

Combine raisins and whiskey in a small bowl; cover and let stand 10 minutes or until soft (do not drain). You could substitute apple juice (??!!) for whiskey.

Combine milk and next 4 ingredients (through eggs) in a large bowl; stir well with a whisk. Add bread cubes and raisin mixture, pressing gently to moisten; let stand 15 minutes. Spoon bread mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Combine 1 tablespoon sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle over pudding. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes or until set. Serve warm with Caramel-Whiskey Sauce.


1-1/2 cups sugar
2/3 cup water
1/4 cup butter
2 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup Irish whiskey (again, substitute 1 tablespoon imitation rum extract and 3 tablespoons water for whiskey, if desired)
1/4 cup milk

Combine sugar and water in a small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until sugar dissolves, stirring constantly.

Cook an additional 15 minutes or until golden (do not stir) 

After the sugar mixture is done, carefully add butter and cream cheese, stirring constantly with a whisk (mixture will be hot and bubble vigorously).

Cool slightly and stir in whiskey and milk. 



Still recovering from injuries sustained during her last effort in solving a murder, Rosaria O’Reilly is dragged into a new case with ties with ties to the Irish community on both sides of the Atlantic. Set in Boston and Western Ireland, BURIED TROUBLES tells a story about the murder of an aspiring young Irish journalist on the Boston waterfront and the long memories of a small island with a complicated history. Against the wishes of her partner BPD Detective Solly Belkin, who is handling the case in Boston, Rosaria travels to Western Ireland for answers. There, she is caught up in a dark web of ancient grievances, crimes and secrets that powerful people are determined to keep hidden forever. She soon finds herself in grave danger from those who won’t let go of the past.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Marian McMahon Stanley is the author of two Rosaria O’Reilly mysteries from Barking Rain Press - The Immaculate (May 2016) and Buried Troubles (June 2018) as well as a recent short story “Career Transitions” in the Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine.  Marian enjoyed a long international corporate career and, most recently, a senior position at an urban university. A dual citizen of the United States and Ireland, she writes in a small town outside Boston, where she lives with her husband Bill and a Westie named Archie. She is now working on the next in the Rosaria series The Mariposa Circle.


  1. I can't wait to read the book; nor can I wait to make the pudding! Making my shopping list now. Thank you.

  2. I tend to buy day-old croissants and let them get truly stale - then make bread pudding with them. I see no reason this wouldn't work for your recipe. Does that mean I'm "lace curtain" Irish??


    1. That's really the way bread pudding was always made - using up day old bread. Croissants are PERFECT! And "lace curtain Irish" is a fine and honorable thing to be!

  3. The pudding looks delectable and the mystery captivating. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  4. Haven't had bread pudding in ages! Thank you for the recipe!
    I would love to win this book. Thank you for the chance!

    1. Bread pudding is my favorite dessert, Deb! That and a good Indian pudding.

  5. Welcome to MLK Marian! Love the little Westie in your author photo. We have a Westie--Reg--and he's the love of our lives! This recipe sounds fantastic. Maybe I'll make it before hubby finishes reading The Blood Sugar Cure! LOL.

    1. Oh, Westies are very special, Peg. I shared your compliment with Archie - he sends greeting to Reg. Hope you enjoy the bread pudding!

  6. I love bread pudding, your recipe sounds great, and the book sounds awesome! Combine these together and it would be close to a perfect day!!

    1. Music to my ears, Louetta! Hope you enjoy both. M.

  7. I'm intrigued by ancient grievances and secrets. The setting in Boston and Western Ireland is an added bonus.
    bluedawn95864 at gmail dot com

    1. yes, it's a fascinating subject - old grievances and secrets. Endless story opportunities!

  8. Oooooooh, a boozey bread pudding is just what I need right now. Thanks for sharing the recipe and the book sounds like an exciting read.
    little lamb lst at yahoo dot com

    1. I love this pudding after dinner. Just right. Hope you enjoy both the recipe and the read!

  9. My husband is a big fan of Jameson's and bread pudding, so I know he will love this recipe. Thanks for visiting Mystery Lovers' Kitchen and sharing it with us and for introducing us to your new book!

    1. I hope this will be a big hit for your husband, Celia!

  10. Oh, be still my heart! A wicked, wicked recipe!
    The book sounds good, too. ;o)
    libbydodd at comcast dot net

  11. Welcome to the Kitchen, Marian! Both book and pudding sound delightful.