Consider making Chocolate-Cherry Bread Pudding from Top Chef judge Gail Simmons this Mother's Day!

The foodie suggests pairing this delicious dessert with a glass of Estancia Monterey County Pinot Noir for a truly one-of-a-kind taste!

Ingredients: Seves 8-10

· 1 pound brioche or challah, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 12 cups)

· 1 cup dried tart cherries

· 8 ounces dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

· 4 tablespoons unsalted butter plus more for greasing pan

· 4 cups whole milk

· 1/2 cup granulated sugar

· 4 large eggs, lightly beaten

· 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

· ¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks

· 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar

· Vanilla ice cream for serving (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread brioche on a large rimmed baking sheet and toast in oven, stirring once or twice, until lightly golden and dry, about 15 minutes. Place cherries in a small bowl. Bring 1 cup water to a boil, then pour over cherries to plump; set aside.

  2. Place chopped dark chocolate in a large bowl. In a medium saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Whisk in milk and granulated sugar; heat just to a simmer, then pour over chocolate. Let rest 5 minutes, then stir together until smooth.

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and vanilla; add to chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Add brioche; toss to coat well. Let stand 15 minutes to allow brioche to absorb custard. Drain cherries, then add to brioche mixture with chocolate chunks; gently stir to combine.

  4. Grease a 9-by-11-inch baking dish with butter. Pour brioche mixture into dish, then sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake bread pudding until set, about 50 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes. Serve warm, with ice cream, if desired.

Note: Bread pudding can be made up to 2 days ahead and kept refrigerated, covered. Reheat in oven at low temperature before serving.