The Broiler Fiasco

I’ve lived in my current apartment for about three months, so I still don’t know everything about this place. For most of those three months I lived on a rotation of the same 5 meals, none of which used the broiler. When making bread pudding, sometimes you need to broil the bread. I figured it couldn’t be too hard to use the broiler here. Boy, was I wrong.

The oven is one of those half-sized ovens that many small apartments have. I have used one in the past, but again, I haven’t used the broiler. So, since there is only one notch that says “broil,” I figured you point the arrow there and the one broiler setting turns on. Turn it away from the word “broil” and no longer broiling. Makes sense? Well, it did to me!

So I broiled the bread for the first attempt at Oreo bread pudding. And, right after, I turned the oven to 350 degrees. (Okay, so I was in a rush and didn’t let the custard soak into the bread for 45 minutes.)

I put the Oreo bread pudding in the oven. After a few minutes, I smelled burning. I ignored it, thinking some custard boiled over and got on the bottom of the oven (which also did happen). After 30 minutes, I go to take the bread pudding out of the oven, and the top is completely burnt. Not to mention, the bread pudding is more puffed up than I had ever seen before!

I start going through the list of things that may have gone wrong: not enough soaking made the bread too dry, putting melted Oreo creme on top before baking, set the oven temperature too high, etc. What could have done this?

I also messed up this bread pudding attempt by making a sauce almost entirely of melted Oreo creme for the top of the bread pudding. I had to remake the bread pudding the next day, no matter what.

Take two: the next day…

If you read the Oreo bread pudding post, you will see that I let the bread pudding sit for 3 hours, so what went wrong? No, I did not keep the oven on for three hours, first of all. I was making another recipe while the Oreo bread pudding was sitting in the fridge. I had to broil the bread for that recipe. After the bread was finished under the broiler, I figured why not use the heat that was already in the oven and just preheat it to 350. Lo and behold, same results.

This time, I realized that it had to have been the broiler that did this. I fixed everything I thought had gone wrong the first time.

Here is how I think my oven works. Turn to broil for a moderate broil, or set it back to a temperature, without turning it off first, to make it broil at a specific temperature.  Great! Switch the oven all the way off to undo the broil setting.

The bread pudding was definitely edible once the burnt pieces were removed.

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