1lb thick cut bacon, cooked and cut into 1/4in pieces
1 loaf brioche, crust discarded and sliced 1in thick
1/2 cup creme fraiche
1tb vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
2/3 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
Layer bacon and brioche in 6 alternating layers in a 9in x 5in loaf pan, beginning with bacon and ending with brioche. Whisk 3-9 with 7tb maple syrup and pour slowly into pan. Mixture may take a few additions with rests in between to fully soak into bread. Wrap and chill for 1 hour or overnight.
Bake at 325 degrees for 70 minutes. Warm remaining maple syrup with pecans in a small saucepan, pour over pudding and serve.
Cook garlic, 1tb butter and 1tsp water in a 8in skillet on low heat for 8-10 minutes or until straw-colored. Take off-heat, add remaining butter and stir until melted and strain, reserving garlic.
Pulse 3-5 in processor 4-5 times. With processor running, and ice water, 1tb butter and garlic. Continue processing until dough forms and becomes elastic, about 1 minute.
Knead dough briefly. Rise 1-1.5 hours.
Form dough into a 12in x 6in rectangle. Cut 12 6in x 1in strips and cover while forming knots. Roll strip out to 14in. Form into a U-shape. Tie into a overhand knot with a 1-1/2in loop. Wrap one end over the top of loop and one end under the bottom of the loop. Press one end in the center of the loop and pull the other end through the center. Rise 1-1.5 hours or refrigerate for up to 16 hours and rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
Bake in the center of a 500 degree oven for 5 minutes. Brush with 2tb butter, rotate and continue baking for 5 minutes. Brush with remaining butter, sprinkle with salt and cool for 15 minutes. Serve.
Toast bread in a 350 degree oven until lightly toasted and set aside.
Meanwhile, render bacon and set aside. Discard all but 2tb fat and cook leeks for 5 minutes. Set aside with bacon. Cook mushrooms in 2 batches for 5 minutes each, set aside with bacon and leek and let cool.
Add 5-7 to mixture. Whisk 8-10 and mix in. Fold in bread. Transfer to a 9in baking dish, top with gruyere and bake at 350 degrees for 40-60 minutes. Serve.