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French toast turned into a casserole

"Cinnamon French Toast Casserole" makes a hot and hearty breakfast or brunch for the weekend!
"Cinnamon French Toast Casserole" makes a hot and hearty breakfast or brunch for the weekend!
photos: Daniel Dedmon

Now that the weekend is about here, after a busy week of work and school, you and your crowd maybe would like something special for breakfast or brunch. French toast is always popular and it's especially popular with children. Let's take French toast to a new level and make a casserole that will fit the bill for this weekend, which is for "Cinnamon French Toast Casserole".

Cinnamon is a natural for French toast, though this one has quite a bit of cinnamon in it. This is because it not only has cinnamon as an added ingredient, but it also uses cinnamon raisin bread. The bread is buttered on both sides and placed in a baking dish. Eggs, egg yolks, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and heavy cream are all beaten together to make a custard mixture. This is poured over the bread. You now cover it and refrigerate it overnight. The next morning, it goes into the oven. In about 30-40 minutes, you have a great breakfast treat, ready to serve with fresh strawberries, blueberries or the traditional maple syrup.

This recipe calls for the "Pepperidge Farm" brand of cinnamon raisin bread. Of course, if you're unable to find this in your local stores, go with a brand you can get. In fact, for the slideshow for this article, I used a loaf of frosted cinnamon raisin bread and it worked just fine. You might not find this bread in the bread section of the grocery store, incidentally. You may find it in the bakery section, which was where this bread I used came from.

Serve this with some bacon or sausage, juice, hot coffee or hot cocoa for a breakfast treat. For a brunch, add some cheese grits along with the bacon or sausage. No matter what you choose to serve with it, you'll have a dish that may turn into a "make that again" recipe!

In case you're in the mood for eggs, how about an omelet? Last year, I did an article on how to make a "Ten-Minute Omelet", which is just the thing for breakfast or brunch, too. To get the recipe, follow this link:

http://www.examiner.com/article/omelets-a-special-breakfast-treat

Also, while we serve pancakes for breakfast most of the time, they can be equally good at night. Here's a video link on how you can enjoy them outside of breakfast:

http://www.examiner.com/article/pancakes-not-just-a-breakfast-food

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast or brunch, made easily with the following ingredients:

CINNAMON FRENCH TOAST CASSEROLE

  • 1 loaf "Pepperidge Farm" Cinnamon Raisin bread
  • soft butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Confectioner's sugar for dusting over the top
  • fresh strawberries, fresh blueberries or maple syrup for serving

Spread each slice of bread with soft butter on both sides. Place in a greased 9x13 casserole, overlapping the slices. Beat together the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon and heavy cream. Pour over the bread. Cover and chill overnight. The next morning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until casserole is browned and firm to the touch. Dust confectioner's sugar over the casserole and serve immediately with fresh strawberries, fresh blueberries or maple syrup. Yield: 8 servings.