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CAPIROTADA (Mexican Bread Pudding)

Capirotada usually has layers of nuts, cheese, dried or fresh fruit, and a cinnamon-sugar syrup. It is believed to have originated as a dish for Lent. In Mexico and Arizona this was originally made with pinones, or pine nuts, and in some recipes the bread cubes were fried before use in the recipe, like Torrijas.
Like Torrijas, this bread pudding has no custard base. It has a taste similar to apple pie with cheddar cheese!
Serves 8 to 12.


• canola spray for greasing
• 2 to 3 ounces tequila
• 1/2 cup golden raisins, divided
• 2 cups water
• 2 cinnamon sticks, or if available 1/2 teaspoon Mexican cinnamon and 1 cinnamon stick
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 1 long thin loaf stale French bread, sliced in 1 /2-inch to 1 -inch thick slices, and cubed • 1/2 cup golden raisins, divided
• 1 cup pine nuts, or pecans (or half and half), divided
• 3 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced, divided
• 2 cups grated cheddar cheese (or Monterey Jack), divided

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9x13-inch baking pan with canola spray.

Place raisins in a bowl with tequila.

In a quart pot, boil the water and cinnamon for 4 minutes, then stir in sugar, boil for another minute, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Remove cinnamon stick(s) and set aside.

Make a layer of bread cubes in the prepared pan. Sprinkle with half the raisins, then half the nuts, half the apples, and half the cheese.

Repeat making another layer of bread, raisins, nuts, apples, and cheese.

Pour sugar syrup over the top of the layered ingredients. Cover with aluminum foil.

Bake 45 minutes, remove from heat and let cool for 15 to 20 minutes.


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