Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease 2” deep, 9”x13” pan. Add half of bread and spread half of cranberry sauce, berries and walnuts over bread. Repeat. (The pan will be full and may not require all of the bread.) Combine custard mixture and pour over bread, filling the pan. Using the palms of your hands, press down slowly to absorb liquid. Cover tightly with parchment, then foil for a tight seal and to prevent pudding from sticking to foil. Bake for 1½ to 2 hrs, until custard is set in the center. To check doneness, press down gently but firmly to ensure that no liquid rises to the top.* Uncover and bake 10 min more to lightly brown and dry top. Cool in pan. Combine hard sauce ingredients with whisk or mixer and spoon over top of pudding.
*Tip: As with all custard-based dishes (quiche, flan, etc.) it is better to slightly overcook than to undercook. Once it has cooled, it cannot be put back in the oven and made right.