Hands down this wins the prize for special holiday breakfast food...if there were a competition for special holiday breakfast food. Who knows, maybe there is? In any case this is THE BEST!! Partly because of how it tastes and partly because it comes together in like about 5 minutes the night before you want to serve it which makes it a perfect dish if you have overnight holiday guests or just want to treat your regular crew to an extra-terrific morning treat. Think the best cinnamon toast you ever had and then double that. It's so, so dreamy with a creamy, almost pudding-like center and a crunchy, cinnamon-sugar top. It'll make your house smell amazing and earn you major wake-up points!
It's as simple as stuffing slices of cinnamon-swirl bread into a casserole dish and pouring a egg/milk/cream etc. mixture over it. Seriously, that's all the prep work. The magic happens overnight while the whole thing takes a nice long cold soak in the fridge. Right before you bake it, the top gets sprinkled with a brown sugar cinnamon mixture. That's it, folks! And while some bread puddings fall more into the dessert category, like this Miraculous Creme Caramel Bread Pudding, this one leans a lot more towards the breakfast camp. Sure, it's decadent--not something say you'd serve on a run-of-the-mill Tuesday morning, but still decidedly more of a breakfast offering. This would be fantastic onThanksgiving morning or the day after (or really anytime over the weekend or even just an ordinary lazy Saturday or Sunday) I guarantee you won't be disappointed!!
And now, I just wanted to wish all of you a very happy, healthy, safe and of course, delicious Thanksgiving! Truly, I'm thankful for each and every one of you who read all the craziness and cook all the food I post here. Makes my life a whole lot of fun!! Going to shut down the writing here for a few days to spend time with family (can't wait to see my middle guy home from school-wish my other one were coming home too, along with his fiancé), do my holiday cooking and a drive a certain hockey girl to Pittsburgh. But I'll be around for questions, so if you're facing any holiday disasters, don't hesitate to get in touch. And if you're doing any holiday shopping on Black Friday (I kinda hate the whole crowded crazy hours thing) you might want to check out Reviews.com and see what they have to say about a whole lot of different products--there's some very good advice about purchasing quality knives and cookware sets should you be in the market for those things. Anyway, thanks again and I'll be back next week with more food and chatter as we hurtle into December!!
Overnight Cinnamon Toast Bread Pudding
Makes 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes, plus at least 8 hours soaking and chilling time; Bake Time: About 1 hour
- 16 slices cinnamon swirl bread (about 1 1/2 loaves)
- 2 cups milk (any kind but not skim)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 6 large eggs
- 1 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1. The night before you want to serve this, spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and lay the slices of the bread in the pan, overlapping them slightly and packing them in tightly.
2. Into a large bowl, place the milk, cream, eggs, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, salt, vanilla, molasses and maple syrup and whisk together well. Pour over the bread in the dish, making sure it soaks into each piece, Move them around a bit if necessary so that all the pieces are covered in the mixture. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and place in the fridge overnight or for at least 8 hours.
3. When you're ready to bake it, take it out of the fridge and remove the foil. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. In a small bowl, mix the remaining cinnamon with the brown sugar in a small bowl and sprinkle the mixture all over the top of the soaked bread. Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour until very well browned and the only slightly wobbly in the center.
4. Serve the pudding warm as is or with additional maple syrup or with a dusting of powdered sugar.
Note: Recipe adapted from One Pan & Done by Molly Gilbert. Feel free to sub in coffee extract for the vanilla. Also, the recipe can be easily halved if you want to serve fewer people--just half the ingredients and cook in an 8x8-inch baking dish instead.