The Absent Hostess … or the Night Before the Next Morning

How to be a good host when you won’t actually be at home with your guests? That’s the quandary I recently ran into, which I solved with a simple dish: oven-baked french toast. This is a do-ahead treat that you can assemble the night before, pop in the fridge and simply slide in the oven the next morning, with your eyes still half-closed, as the coffee perks. It would work equally well as a hearty hangover breakfast, prepared long before the makings of the hangover are even underway. Whether or not I’ll be imbibing, I’m thinking this will become my new New Year’s Day tradition. In any case, I’ll fall asleep with sweet thoughts of the custardy breakfast bliss that awaits.

Oven-Baked French Toast

  • 1 loaf soft-crust Italian bread
  • 1/2 C butter, melted
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/4 t nutmeg
  • 1/2 C packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 C 2% milk (use 4% for a richer dish, or go all the way and use 1 3/4 C cream, eliminating the ingredient listed below)
  • 1/4 C half and half
    1. Combine butter, spices and brown sugar in shallow bowl. Briefly dip each piece of bread in butter mixture, using a pastry brush or your hands if necessary to slather each side.
    2. Transfer each piece to a buttered 9 x 13 glass pan, packing tightly and making two layers of bread.
    3. Beat together the eggs, milk and cream, adding in any remaining butter mixture, then pour evenly over prepared bread.
    4. Cover and let sit in the fridge overnight.
    5. Bake 25-30 in a preheated 375 degree oven and enjoy with Michigan maple syrup.

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      One CommentLeave a comment

      1. It truly was delicious. Thank you again for being an absentee hostess.

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