After a month or more of baking projects, fancy meals, and crafting adventures, sometimes a simple meal that mostly makes itself is just what you need on the table, particularly when said meal is happening on a weekend morning. Below is my favorite French toast casserole because it's so easy, warms the kitchen, and allows me to curl up with a cup of coffee and a good book while it bakes. It's just what I need after the holidays.
What's even better is that it's easy to double or triple if you have a lot of bread to use up (I might have assumed I would be making more sandwiches over our holiday break ...). Then you can pop the individual casserole pucks into a freezer bag or two and have a quick breakfast option for the weekdays too! So yeah ... that bread was intentional ... yeah.
I happened to use brioche bread for the meal pictured here, but any number of types of bread will work. If you are using a thicker bread, stir it a bit more and you might need to let it sit a bit longer to fully soak up the egg mixture. The lighter the bread, the more it will puff up as it bakes as well. Neither approach is better or worse ... but there will be a texture difference worth noting. Now it's time to find your fresh fruit and maple syrup and plan for a decadent weekend!
- 4 eggs
- 1 c. whole milk, half and half, or heavy cream
- Pinch of ground cinnamon
- 8 oz. bread, torn into small cubes
- ¼ c. coarse sugar
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Gently whisk the eggs and milk, half and half, or heavy cream with the ground cinnamon; set aside. Place the torn brioche into a large bowl and pour the egg mixture evenly over the bread. Stir to coat evenly. Allow the bread to soak up the egg mixture for about 15 minutes; stir again about halfway through that time.
Spoon the bread-egg mixture into lightly sprayed muffin tins or muffin top tins (which is what I used). Sprinkle evenly with coarse sugar.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until the mixture puffs up and turns golden brown. Serve immediately with fresh fruit and maple syrup.
- Yields: 4 servings
- Preparation Time: 50 minutes