We were invited out for breakfast Saturday morning, but, knowing how my kids would much prefer a laid back Saturday morning at the house, I offered to host a brunch. I had been sent a sampler pack of Udi’s Gluten Free Bread loaves and searched for a recipe that I could prepare the night before, using their bread. I finally combined a few recipes and came up with my own: Gluten Free French Toast Bake, a make ahead breakfast casserole. This recipe can be prepared Gluten Free by using Gluten Free breads and flour, or “regular” using whole wheat flour and a loaf of your favorite bread. Plan to make most of this breakfast casserole the night before–it’s ideal for a homemade breakfast on a busy Christmas morning.
- 1 loaf Udi's Gluten Free Bread (I used whole grain)
- 8 eggs
- 2 cups milk (the fatter the better), 3/4 cup milk (separated)
- 1/3 cup of butter, plus butter for spreading on pan
- 3 Tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup flour (you could use Gluten Free to make this a GF recipe)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick cold butter, cut into small pieces
- grease bottom of 13x9 baking dish with butter;
- tear loaf of bread to pieces and lay onto the baking dish. I didn't use most of the crust and definitely not the ends, but there's nothing wrong with using the crust. Set aside;
- melt 1/3 cup of butter; add 3/4 cup of milk; and bring to boil. pour 1/2 cup into medium mixing bowl (and discard the rest). You just made heavy cream!
- Add eggs, 2 cups milk, 3 tablespoons maple syrup, 2 cups sugar to mixing bowl and mix;
- pour over bread, cover tightly and let set in the refrigerator overnight.
- Mix flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt in a small bowl; add butter pieces; mix very well... it's tempting to shortcut... don't. Place in refrigerator overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350;
- sprinkle cinnamon mixture over casserole and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour (the longer the drier and thcker... use your judgement, and your taste buds);
- serve in single servings with butter, syrup, powdered sugar, caramel or whipped cream as toppings.
Believe it or not, I had a picture. It was a beautiful picture. The picture is gone and I’m sad. I do plan to make this again on Christmas morning, so I’ll take a picture of it then. Thanks to Udi’s for the bread!
**updated! There were two typos in the recipe. I updated both on April 9, 2012.**
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