A loaf of regular day-old bread is perfectly fine in this dish. But for an extra-special treat, we save all the stale brioche rolls and last lingering cinnamon buns from brunches throughout the months and freeze them in a bag together. When we have enough, we make one unforgettable bread pudding.
Also, bread puddings are not the place to skimp or substitute lower-fat ingredients. Just close your eyes and crack those eggs, and remind yourself that you'll be sharing this dish with a whole roomful of people.