Need a brunch idea? Make french toast casserole.

One of my favorite things about the weekend is having more time to
make a nice breakfast for the family.  During the week I am usually
rushing to get my toddler to daycare. While making her lunch I am also
making breakfast, and hoping she’ll stop jumping around long enough to
eat.  Although, I have found bacon will get her stop on a dime!

This past weekend my mother requested I make a french toast
casserole, which is one of the easiest and most delicious breakfasts to
make.  Most of the prep work is done the night before, and in the
morning you just pop it into the oven to bake.

I adapted this recipe from Paula “Pass me a stick of butter” Deen
because I liked the topping, but there are many variations to be found
on the web.

Baked French Toast Casserole

2 12 oz. loaves Hawaiian sweet bread, cut into 1″ slices

8 large eggs

3 cups half-and-half

3 TB granulated sugar

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/3 tsp ground cinnamon

Praline Topping

2 sticks butter, softened

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1 cup chopped pecans

2 TB light corn syrup

1/3 tsp ground cinnamon

Arrange bread slices in two rows in a
buttered 9 by 13-inch baking dish.  In large bowl, whisk together the
eggs, half-and-half, sugar, vanilla and cinnamon until blended.  Pour
mixture over bread, pressing the bread down lightly to help absorb the
mixture.  Spoon the liquid over the bread until well coated.  Cover
dish with foil and refrigerate overnight.

In medium bowl mix butter, brown sugar,
pecans, corn syrup, and cinnamon together until well blended.  Cover
with plastic wrap and leave out overnight, because it needs to be soft
enough to spread the next morning.

The next day preheat oven to 350 degrees
F.  Remove foil from casserole, and evenly spread praline topping on
french toast.  Bake for 40 minutes, until puffed up and browned.  Let
sit for 5 minutes to cool.  This serves 8 - 10  people.

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