Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Žemlovka aka Zemlbába (Czech apple-bread pudding)

Typical Czech bread pudding is made with bread, apples, cinnamon, sugar, raisins and curd or cottage cheese. We usually serve it as a dinner or lunch during the winter months. I know, Czechs are weird, sometimes we eat sweet stuff as main meals. Here is my veganized version that I like to make. It can be made without the cheese but if I really wanted to I could make it with tofu or vegan cream cheese. You can try to add some sweetened vegan cream cheese in between the layers if you wish. I made this pudding earlier this evening. The whole house still smells like cinnamon and apples.

1 loaf of Italian bread or other white bread, sliced
6 apples, peeled, cored and grated
2 1/2 cups soy or almond milk
1 cup raisins
1 tsp. vanilla extract
6 Tbs. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 F. Coat 9x13-inch glass or ceramic baking dish with cooking spray.
Place grated apples in a medium bowl and squeeze out excess liquid. Set aside.
Heat the milk with 3 Tbs. sugar and vanilla extract over medium-high heat until the sugar melts, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and let cool.
Dip 1/3 of bread slices into sweetened milk, coating evenly. Squeeze out excess milk. Arrange soaked bread sliced in a single layer in baking dish. Spread 1/2 of the grated apples evenly over the bread. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup raisins, 1 Tbs. sugar and some cinnamon. Repeat the same steps making another layer of soaked bread slices, apples, 1/2 cup raisins, 1 Tbs. sugar and cinnamon. Arrange last layer of soaked bread over the apples and raisins mixture and sprinkle with 1 Tbs. sugar and rest of the cinnamon.
Bake bread pudding in oven 40 minutes. Serve warm by itself or with some vegan vanilla ice cream.


  1. Do you know, that isn't so weird eating sweet stuff for a main meal? I do it every now and then and actually bread and butter pudding is one of the things I eat as I love it and get greedy! Eating it as a meal means I get to have my fill. This looks a cross between bread and butter pudding (where the slices are spread with vegan margerine, and bread pudding, where the slices are mixed together with soya milk until a soft paste before other ingredients are added). This look delicious with the apple so it's going on my list of urgent things to make. Thanks.