For some reason I can not get enough of French Toast. I crave it for breakfast, and have turned down breakfast places because they don't have it on the menu. This has lead to my quest for the perfect homemade French Toast. I've made a couple different versions and I think this is my favorite so far. I used whole wheat French bread (because it's what my Mom bought,) and although initially worried the bread wouldn't taste as good as normal French bread, it turned out great! I made this for my family when they were all here for Easter weekend and everyone loved it.
I didn't use this whole loaf, but I could have. I forgot how much my brother can eat ;) I used about 3/4 of it and it was just enough for four people, if we had a fruit salad to go with it.
Start by spraying a 9x13 inch pan with non-stick spray. I would recommend you spray it very thoroughly. I had issues with the bread sticking to the bottom after it was baked. Tear or cut the French bread into bite size pieces and evenly place in the pan.
In a large bowl mix together eggs, milk, cream and vanilla extract.
Pour evenly over the bread. Cover and store in the fridge for several hours. I did this the night before and it worked out perfectly. I also recommend a hour or so before you bake it that you stir it around so the mixture has a chance to coat all of the bread.
In a separate bowl mix together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. Add the butter pieces and cut into the dry mixture using a fork or your hands. I find I usually do well cutting it with my hands.
Combine until the mixture kind of clumps together into pea size bits. You can make this the day before with the toast, or the morning of. If you make it ahead of time, also cover and place in the fridge until ready to use.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the toast from the fridge and sprinkle the crumb mixture on top, as evenly as possible.
Bake for around 40 minutes, until the French Toast is set and brown. As you can see the butter/cinnamon mixture will melt.
Serve immediately and sprinkle with powdered sugar or syrup if you choose. This turned out so great, the bread was soft and the cinnamon butter mixture on top added additional bursts of flavor that is normally just mixed in. This is a great dish to make for a group of people, and sure to make everyone swoon over how delicious it tastes!
I hope you have all checked out the Bloggers Bake for Hope website! Bidding started today and will continue until midnight Friday. Take a look - how can you resist some of those treats honestly?! http://bloggersbakeforhope.blogspot.com/
Cinnamon Baked French Toast
Adapted from Pioneer Woman
*I cut recipe in half
1 loaf French bread
8 large eggs
2 cups whole milk (used skim and still tasted very rich)
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
3/4 cups sugar
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
Spray a 9x13 inch baking pan with cooking spray.
Tear or cut French toast into bite size pieces.
Spread evenly in the pan.
In a large bowl, mix together eggs, milk, cream, sugar and vanilla extract.
Pour evenly over the bread.
Cover and store in the fridge overnight or for several hours.
In a separate bowl mix together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt.
Add butter pieces and cut into dry mixture with your hands.
Combine until the mixture is in pea sized chunks.
Cover and store or make right before baking.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Sprinkle the crumb mixture on top of the toast.
Bake for around 40 minutes until golden brown.
Serve warm with powdered sugar and syrup.