Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas morning breakfast


I have usually made granola for our Christmas morning breakfast in the past because it's easy to make ahead of time, and we don't have it often, so it seems special.  But this year I found another make-ahead recipe I wanted to try.  It's Baked French Toast, from the King Arthur Flour blog (GREAT baking blog, by the way; I love it) and you can find the recipe here.

I made it with my own wheat bread and it was delicious!!  I put it together the night before (it only takes 10 min. to prepare or so.)  Then I put it in the oven when we came downstairs on Christmas morning and it was ready when we were done looking at our stockings.  We also baked the bacon (Beth taught me that you can do that, but I usually forget to try it---it's a great method though) and everyone declared that we'd found our new Christmas morning breakfast tradition. 

Would you like to try it for New Year's?  Here is the recipe with my suggestions:

Glaze---this is 1 1/2 times what they suggest; I found there wasn't enough syrup the first time I made it (my bread soaked up more, perhaps?)

3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks)
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3 tablespoons honey
Melt the butter in a saucepan.  Add sugar and honey and cook it for a few minutes, till it boils and the sugar dissolves.  Pour it into a 9x13 glass pan so it coats the bottom.

Lay slices of bread on top to cover the syrup.  (About 9 pieces of bread, or 6 if they're big)

Custard:
Then whisk together until smooth:
1 1/2 c. whipping cream, half-and-half, or milk (I did 1/2 c. cream, 1 c. milk)
5 eggs
1 t. almond extract
1 t. vanilla extract
1/4 t. salt

Pour this custard over the pieces of bread, making sure everything is well-coated.  Cover the whole pan with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge overnight.  The bread will soak up the custard as it sits.

In the morning, mix this Topping:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (they say 1/4 t. of each, but I always double my spices in something like this)

Remove the plastic wrap from the pan and sprinkle the topping evenly over the bread.  Then bake it at 350 for about 45 minutes.  (If desired, put the bacon in for the last 30 minutes or so.)

When you serve it, drizzle some of the extra syrup from the pan on top (you can also flip the pieces upside-down so the syrup side is up).  It is also good re-heated the next day (right, Sam?) if you have any left over---which you won't unless one of your ravenous children is not feeling quite as ravenous as usual :)

4 comments:

  1. Yep, nearly as good heated up. The top didn't have the same slightly crunchy texture, but everything else was just the same.

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  2. How do you feel about substituting milk for the whipped cream? I never have it, and I hate to think of it IN my french toast when I could be enjoying it in a dollop on top, instead.

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  3. Whoa. THIS SOUNDS WONDERFUL. I have to apologize for being so behind, Mar. I will catch up. Really I will. How do you bake bacon? I'm thinking of trying this as our last nod to eating ourselves to death.

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  4. Beth: yes, I used mostly milk with only 1/2 cup of cream (because I was trying to use some up), but I'm sure all milk will be fine. That's probably what I'll do most of the time too. I agree, I hate to "waste" ingredients I can't really NOTICE and ENJOY! :)

    K: You just put strips of bacon on parchment paper on a cookie sheet. And then bake at 350 for about a half hour. It's come out perfectly every time we've done it. (Only three times, but still.) I hope you make this; it's so delicious! And really, we used whole wheat bread . . . and cut down the cream . . . so it's not AS bad, right? :)

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