Weird, I wrote this post FOREVER ago (seriously, more than a year) but never posted it! Which is a shame, because this baked french toast is seriously yummy! I love any recipe that you can assemble the night before, and just pop in the oven that morning.
(Plus, shhhhhh, this has booze in it! Although, how much of a secret is that, really, since I put it in the title of the post.)
It’s really a simple recipe. Slice up some challah bread (you should be able to find it in your grocery store bakery, but if not, you could also use a loaf of french bread). Do one layer of bread, and then add any “filling” (nuts, dried fruit, etc. work well–however, if you do nuts, I would recommend maybe toasting them with some cinnamon and sugar. Or, honestly, I liked it just as well without any filling at all). Put your second layer of bread on (I wouldn’t recommend more than two layers, it won’t really bake up well). Then just pour your egg mixture on top, wrap it up, and let it sit overnight.
I like that this is a great basic recipe that you can make your own. You could add orange zest and maybe orange liqueur as your flavoring. Or just plain vanilla. I used a mixture of vanilla and caramel Bailey’s. It baked up really nice, and the middle almost a custard.
And it was just perfect with a heavy-handed drizzle of warmed maple syrup and some fruit salad on the side. Speaking of the fruit salad, I just kind of made it up. But I highly recommend the use of citrus zest in fruit salad. It is oh so good!
Boozy Baked French Toast
1 loaf supermarket Challah bread in 1-inch slices
3 cups whole milk
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
Your choice of flavorings: I used 3 tablespoons Caramel Bailey’s and a teaspoon or so of vanilla. I also added a sprinkling of pecans between layers…next time though, I think I will toast them with some brown sugar and cinnamon.
1. Generously grease a 9×13-inch baking dish with salted or unsalted butter.
2. Arrange bread in two tightly-packed layers in the pan. I always cut one slice into smaller pieces to fill in gaps, especially when using braided Challah. If using a thinner-sliced bread, you might wish for more layers, but baking tends to get difficult here. If you are using any fillings of fruit or nuts, this is the time to get them between the layers or sprinkled atop.
3. Whisk milk, eggs, sugar, salt and booze or flavorings of your choice and pour over the bread. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
4. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. The bread will absorb all of the milk custard while you sleep.
5. Bake at 425 for 30 minutes, or until puffed and golden. This will take longer if you have additional layers.
6. Cut into generous squares and serve with maple syrup, fresh fruit, powdered sugar or all of the above.
Serves 6 as main course.
Not really a recipe, as I just kind of made it up. I took two mango, one papaya, and two granny smith apples. Tossed them all together with the juice and zest of one lime, and honey to taste.