This is tweaked some, but otherwise lifted straight from the Joy of Cooking (Rombauer and Becker, 1997).
In a largish bowl place one store bought loaf of sliced bread, cubed, with crust removed.
In small sauce pan bring to simmer 1 1/2 cup water with 1/2 to 1 cup DME. Turn off heat, steep 1/2 oz aroma hops (I am up to 4 HBUs for this step ;-) for 5 minutes, strain to small mixing bowl. When cool add 2 cups milk,1/4 teaspoon salt, three egg yolks and another 1/2 cup DME and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Stir, add optionals like:
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, rasins, dates, small pineapple chunks, orange marmalade (about a half cup), etc. As soon as I figure out Hallertau jelly, it goes in.
Mix, pour over liquid bread in large bowl, soak 15 minutes.
In third bowl beat three egg whites to stiff peaks.
Fold egg whites into wet bread pieces, glop evenly into 2 pans 8x8x1.5 inches.
Place baking pan in larger pan with water so the pudding pan is in a water bath.
Bake in preheated oven at 350°F for about 45 minutes. Sprinkle brown sugar lightly on top when fresh from oven.
I bake these the night before when I expect a stressful day at work. Just leave them on the table in the break room. Oddly the hopping is very light in the AM and more noticeable in the afternoon - the reverse of beer.
Goes good with coffee.