Thursday, July 1, 2010

Baked French Toast

Brunch is one of my favorite meals to make, and eat! I can't really explain why, but brunch food is always delicious- maybe it's because I can combine my favorite breakfast and lunch dishes without getting weird looks? Whatever the reason, brunch is awesome and really good french toast is high on my list of things to order-- and this recipe now makes it high on my list to make.

I've been completely enthralled with the World Cup these last few weeks. So far I've refrained from having the live ESPN feed up on my laptop during classes but my weekends are suddenly resembling college football in the fall. After a disappointing US loss yesterday, several of us got together this morning to watch the Germany-England game, which I used as good excuse to try out this recipe! French toast isn't the usual sports watching fare, but it went over very well and I maintain that unless you're actually tailgating at the game, it's completely reasonable.

This recipe is a combination of two different versions, partially from smittenkitchen and partially from my Grandpa Minchk. I used my grandpa's recipe as a base and referenced the smittenkitchen version for the details that he just wings (measurements and oven temp are important things!) It's very easy to make and super convenient for the morning -- just pull it out of the fridge and stick it in the oven. Suddenly your kitchen is full of delicious smells and all you have to do is warm up the syrup. Letting it soak overnight is definitely the way to go, since it softens the bread and crust down to a gooey, delicious happy carb.

Baked French Toast

Thick, crusty bread. A French baguette or farmhouse-style bread works well.
4 eggs
4 cups of milk (one recipe said whole milk, the other said skim -- I went with 1% and it was delicious)
2 tsp vanilla
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
3 Tbs Kahlua (Frangelico, Bailey's, etc could work here -- just pick your favorite flavor)
*Chopped pecans, almonds, raisons or other dried fruits can be layered between the bread if you want -- highly recommended!

1. Butter or grease 9x13" baking pan.
2. Slice bread into 1" thick slices. If your bread has air holes in it, stick with the thicker sections to avoid soggy french toast.
3. Layer the bread and any fillings you want into the pan.

4. Beat the eggs, milk, vanilla, spices and alcohol together. Pour over the bread, being sure to cover the entire surface.
5. Wrap with saran wrap and let set overnight- the bread will soak up the custard and be thick the next day.
6. Preheat oven to 425ยบ. Bake for ~30 minutes -- may need more if you've layered the bread.

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