Overnight French Toast Casserole

It was one rainy Sunday morning when we were hanging with our friends in Ottawa when Kelli decided to bring out the most delicious breakfast. I had wondered when in the world she had time to make something to amazing when we were all hanging around the table with our coffees. Turns out, she found a genius recipe on Pinterest that you can make the night before and dazzle everyone with the next morning with hardly any effort. I needed to get my hands on this recipe.

A month or so later, my mom came to Ottawa for the weekend and I wanted to do the same thing. Wake up easy on a Sunday morning with a coffee in hand and the smell of French toast filling the house. Mom was pretty impressed when she saw no mess on the stove and smelled all the goodness of baking cinnamon. My sister quickly drove over so she could taste this sought after breaky.

I then decided that for Christmas morning, I wanted to have this scrumptious breakfast baking while we were opening presents and sipping on mimosas and/or coffee and Bailey’s. I prepped everything Christmas Eve late at night (which is quick) including slicing the fruit. I saved making the whipped cream for the morning of. I’m glad I did most of the prep the night before because we all know how busy and hectic Christmas day can be. We have 2 other family gatherings after our own (which starts at 7:30am usually) and need to be efficient with our time. Yet, Christmas is a time for celebrating and I’m all about good food, right? Therefore, this recipe was a dream.

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The cinnamon wafted through the entire house, making it feel even more like Christmas. We were all so excited for this treat that we stopped our gift exchange part-way through and devoured as much as we could handle. *A fair warning: no one will be hungry for lunch after this*.

IMG_2189Now, the overnight part is crucial. You need to let the bread pieces soak in the egg/cinnamon mixture all night, or else things turn out crunchy in some parts and overly soft in others. I also did myself a solid and washed and cut up the strawberries, raspberries and blueberries the night before. All I would have to do is slice some bananas, make the whipped cream and place the syrup on the table! Brilliant. Everything turned out brilliantly.

Ingredients:Ā 1 loaf sourdough bread (I used a French baguette), 8 eggs, 2 cups milk, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tbsp vanilla

Ingredients for the topping: 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/2 cup cold butter cut into pieces

 

Instructions: The Night Before:Ā Cut loaf into cubes and place evenly in a greased 9×13 pan. In a bowl, mix together eggs, milk, heavy cream, sugar and vanilla. Pour evenly over bread. Cover your pan with Saran Wrap and refrigerate overnight. Mix together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Cut in butter with this mixture until crumbly and place in a Ziploc bag and refrigerate overnight as well.

The Day Of:Ā Take pan and Ziploc out of the fridge when ready to bake. Sprinkle crumbly mixture evenly over the bread. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on how soft you like it. Serve with fresh cut fruit of your choice, real maple syrup and whipped cream. The whipped cream is made using 1 cup of whipping cream, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1 tbsp confectioner’s sugar (icing sugar). I actually left the bake in for 1 full hour, then 15 minutes after turning the oven off and it turned out better than I’ve ever made it. I also highly recommend using the French baguette for a doughy and crunchy mixture. I also recommend pairing this breakfast with coffee and Bailey’s or mimosas!

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from samantha howells (1)

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