Poor man’s cake

by | Sep 30, 2022 | Desserts

Poor man’s cake is actually a bread pudding made with milk, butter, lemon zest and raisins. It’s a delicious treat and an even better way to reduce food waste. Leftover bread can easily be converted to dessert without much work, and it’s perfect if you’ve got a hankering for something sweet and need to feed a crowd.

Poor man's cake
Poor man’s cake – photo: zserbo.com


  • 400 g (~14 oz) stale bread, diced
  • 1 liter (~4 1/2 cups) milk
  • 160 g (~3/4 cup + 1 tbsp) sugar
  • 120 g (~1/2 cup) butter
  • 120 ml (~1/2 cup) rum (or water + rum essence)
  • 150 g (~5 1/3 oz) raisins
  • zest of a lemon
  • 6 eggs, beaten

Soak raisins in rum (or in water combined with rum essence).

Place sugar, butter and milk in a saucepan and bring it to a boil while stirring regularly. When the milk is boiling, pour it over the bread cubes, stir to mix well and set aside for 30-40 minutes.

Grease a 39×23 cm / 15×9 inch baking pan and preheat the oven to 180°C / 356°F.

Once the bread has soaked up all of the milk, add lemon zest, beaten eggs and raisins together with the rum to the bread and stir well. Tip the pudding mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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Hungarian cottage cheese

This is what Hungarian túró looks like

You often ask me what kind of cottage cheese (or curd cheese or farmer's cheese - call it what you want) I use in the recipes. In Hungary the store-bought cottage cheese is dry and crumbly as you can see in the picture. So if a recipe calls for túró, I mean this type. If you can't obtain túró, you can try to make your own from whole milk. Click on the link below.

Metric system vs cup

In Hungary metric units are in use, all the recipes on this website are based on this system, so a kitchen scale is necessary. Since I’m not familiar with cup as a measurement unit, I convert grams to cups by using an online converter. The values in brackets, therefore, are only approximate volumes, so, please, double-check them before you start cooking.

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