Last year I made this for breakfast Christmas morning and loved it. Prepared the night before. Popped in the oven morning of. Ready to be devoured as soon as presents were open.
Lucky for me I had some homemade Challah bread – - we enjoy eating it with clam chowder on Christmas Eve. You can find the recipe here if you want. It is delicious!
French Toast Casserole
Adapted from Virginia Willis’ “Bon Appetit, Y’all”
In a perfect world, you’ll be able to find brioche or challah for this recipe, but if your world isn’t so perfect, go with what you can get your hands on – French bread, country loaf, Texas toast, even cinnamon-raisin bread.
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- 3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar ( I thought this was a lot of brown sugar – you could definitely go with less!)
- 1 loaf brioche or challah, sliced 1 1/2 inches thick (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 8 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)
- Accompaniments: confectioners’ sugar; sorghum, cane or maple syrup
- Combine the melted butter and brown sugar in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
- Arrange the bread slices in the dish. (It’s fine if they overlap.)
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Pour the mixture over the bread, and let it soak in.
- Top the bread slices evenly with the pecans.
- Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 3 to 12 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In the meantime, take the casserole out of the refrigerator, and let it sit at room temperature for 20 minutes.
- Bake the casserole until it’s browned and set, 30 to 45 minutes. Let it cool slightly on a wire rack. Sift confectioners’ sugar over the casserole, and serve it with sorghum, cane, or maple sugar.
(as found on Ezra Pound Cake.com)
I served mine with this delicious syrup, another family favorite.
1 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Buttermilk
1/2 C. Butter
1/4 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Vanilla
Over medium heat, melt butter and sugar. Once melted, add buttermilk. When it begins to boil, remove from heat and add rest of ingredients. Stir and enjoy!