Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A Really Nice Chef

I got to meet Chuck Hughes at one of the 63 events of the South Beach Wine and Food Festival and I have to say what a nice guy. I have watched a few episodes of his show Chuck's Day Off and had to share with him my impression of one of his recipes that I've tried.

I saw him cooking once this recipe called Chocolate Stout Cakes (see below) and tried it with the 3 different beers a friend of mine brews herself. The recipe is fantastic and sort of a great spin to the typical bread pudding.

We talked for a bit and he said that he visits Miami quite often but never been out of South Beach {huge sin in my book!}... I told him that to get a true Miami experience he needs to get out and visit the other things that have made Miami a great city beside South Beach... hopefully he will do it on his next visit.

Last but not least... he goes under the list of great and really nice chefs I got to meet and that I'd love to interview {or visit!} sometime in the very near future.

  • 1 1/2 cups Stout beer
  • 1/2 cup 35 percent cream
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 4 cups French bread with crust, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Whipped cream, for serving


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Bring the Stout, cream, and 1/2 cup sugar, to a simmer in a medium saucepan, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat. Add 1 cup chocolate chips and whisk until melted and smooth. Set aside to cool.

Whisk the eggs and vanilla in large bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in the cooled chocolate mixture.

Add the bread cubes and the remaining chocolate chips to the custard, and toss to coat. Transfer to 1 1/2-quart-capacity shallow round, square or oval baking dish that you have greased with butter or oil. The batter will come close to the top of the pan. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar over top.

Bake until the custard thickens and the center is just set, about 50 to 60 minutes.

Serve warm, cut a circle using a round biscuit cutter. Garnish with partially whipped whipping cream, lightly sweetened with sugar.

Have a great and sweet Wednesday!


  1. Mmmm, this sounds absolutely DELICIOUS!
    xo Josie

  2. You had me at the french bread. Although I love the idea of cooking, (but mostly eating) for some reason my mind usually wanders when I read the recipe, especially in a blog post--but I read every last word in this post--I am going to have to make this, it sounds perfect and not too sweet!

    xo Mary Jo

  3. How cool! what an awesome experience.

    you look so happy! xoxo

  4. He looks like a very nice man:)

    Have a great day girly....

  5. nice photo, he looks handsome too!!! :)

  6. He's nice and handsome....and talented!!! Win!! :) And it's so nice to put a face and name together! I don't think I've ever seen a picture of you! Or maybe I have, but didn't realize it was you in the shot :)

  7. Sounds wonderful and it sounds like our had a fabulous time!! xo

  8. My husband and I have been talking about doing one of the Food & Wine Festivals! How cool that you get to be behind the scenes :)

    (And yes, owning your own cupcake/coffee house would be the coolest!)

  9. I love Chuck!!
    I'm originally from Montreal and Chuck's restaurant "Garde Manger" was and still is, one of my favorites!

  10. ooh, my goodness that recipe sounds beyond delightful, what a fabulous mix of flavors! LOVE, love it! AND thank you so much for your lovely comment on my bloggy, SO great to meet yours too. xx veronika

  11. Hopefully he'll call you up and ask you to act as his tour guide -- how much would it be to take a chef around the city?
    And I usually don't work much with beer, but tomorrow is St. Patty's Day, so I think it's quite appropriate. I only wish I could get my hands on some of the beer your friend brews.

  12. Ooh, what a fantastic experience! And yayay for another amazing recipe!! :)

  13. So cool! Ooh chocolate stout cakes, this could be dangerous...

    Chic 'n Cheap Living

  14. Food and wine, two of my favorite things! I wish I had the ability to put together items that might not typically go together (beer and pudding) But I would definitely make it with the chocolate stout I just found and LOVE.

  15. Sounds so yummy! Love that you let him know there is more to the area than just South Beach - same here in LA. Tons of great places to visit. Loving your blog (-:

  16. How cool is it that you were able to exchange chef stories with the chef himself :) Sounds like a great recipe :) Chocolate and beer go so well together...I have a fantasic Guiness Brownie recipe that I make all the time! xx Cat

  17. This stout cake sounds divine! How is it that I'm not familiar with this chef? I don't have TV, so I miss out on a lot of things.

    PS- Thanks for finding my blog!

  18. Oh that does sound lovely. :-) I am so fond of comfort-food desserts, and this fits the bill beautifully. :-)

  19. You are so pretty! How have I never seen a photo of you before?

  20. sounds like a great experience!
    & I bet he's cuter in person, yes?
    Luv his shows, he speaks very fast!


  21. This sounds delicious, and John would be delighted we found another use for his stout (he also brews beer)! I love when you meet such genuinely nice people!

  22. what a treat to meet someone whose show you watch, that is always a delight- and he looks like such a nice guy so you made out really well!! And um that cake alkdjfalkdjfalkjd, sounds so good.

  23. This looks great! And such a cute picture!!

  24. Mmm, bet this would be good with Guinness for St. Patricks day!

  25. mmm...chocolate stout cake. delicious! bet my hubby would LOVE this since he really likes his beer. Thanks for this!