Tuesday, February 28, 2017

A Tale of Two Bread Puddings

It's Denver Restaurant Week again here in Colorado, an opportunity to try out some restaurants in town that we have never been to, and to indulge in some excellent quality food.

This year the restaurants are offering a selection of prix fixe menus at different price points.  Some include wine pairings or a flight, some include dessert, but all are absolutely fabulous.

Last weekend, after enjoying a matinee performance at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, we walked over to a nearby restaurant we were curious to try afterwards.  It was a French restaurant we had never been to before, and everything about it was first rate.

The bread was freshly made and just baked, the truffle butter was magic, the course options were all enticing, and the entrees were très magnifique!

A bite of dessert to cap it all off ... marvelously warm bread pudding and a chocolate gateaux that was rich and luscious ... gave me a chance to reflect on our own recipes.   Even though it's always nice to let someone else do the cooking and the baking for you every now and then, and I enjoyed every exquisite bite of the buttery, light bread pudding, I couldn't help but get a craving for our own version.

Dense and cinnamony, with plump, juicy raisins scattered throughout, and enrobed in a caramelized coat, it was so different from the one I was enjoying that I wondered if there was any comparison possible at all.  Theirs was light, fluffy, and exactly what you would expect after a big meal at a fine dining establishment such as that.  Ours is homey, and comforting, and crave-worthy for so many reasons in its own right.

In the end, there is no comparison.  We enjoy different restaurants for the uniqueness each one has to offer.  We enjoy different desserts, and even different recipes for the same dessert, because they fulfill different expectations or cravings.  While we all have our favorites, it's always worthwhile to check out new recipes.  In fact, it's a lifelong process.  It's all good, and it's all worth celebrating.

There are a number of other restaurants we're eyeing, as well, before Denver Restaurant Week is history once again this season.  We have reservations next weekend for Asian cuisine, to wrap up our tour through Denver's most exciting restaurant scene in style.  We're all looking forward to the tasty new thrills we'll encounter there.  It will have to keep us satisfied until next time ... or at least until the next opportunity to check out a new restaurant comes along.

This exposure to many different restaurants in Denver will come in handy when guests pop into town, as well, so we'll have an idea as to what restaurants they might enjoy.  And I might just bake up a homey bread pudding during their visit, too, so that they feel cared for and right at home.

Bon Apétit!

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