Baked French Toast

1 cup heavy cream, half-and-half or milk
6 eggs
1/4 cup maple syrup, plus additional for serving
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 slices white sandwich bread or challah, crusts trimmed
Sliced fresh fruit, for garnish
In a large bowl, whisk together cream, eggs, 1/4 cup maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla and salt. One slice at a time, turn the bread in the egg mixture to coat. Fit coated bread into an 8-by-8 inch baking dish, making a double layer. Very gently press bread with back of a fork to compress slices slightly. Cover with plastic wrap pressed directly onto the bread to help soak up the egg mixture. Refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, heat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly butter a baking sheet, preferably nonstick. Using a wide spatula – or your hands- lift bread, slice by slice, out of soaking mixture, allowing excess liquid to drip back into pan. Place on baking sheet. Bake until puffed and golden, 12 to 15 minutes, turning the slices halfway through baking.

Serve immediately with maple syrup and sliced fresh fruit.

Makes 4 servings.
*Make this the night before for an easy Mother’s day breakfast.

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