Saturday, May 28, 2011

French Toast Loaf

As soon as I saw Gingerbread Bagels post about her French Toast Loaf I put it at the top of my baking list. I was so eager to make it that I planned to make it that very weekend. But that was almost two weeks ago. What took me so long, you may ask? It seems that Texas Toast is a valuable commodity only sold in select stores. It took me over a week of hunting to track some down in my area after trips to four different grocery stores. Who knew fulfilling my lust for sugar and butter could be so difficult?

This masterpiece is a combination of all of the things that make French toast good: fluffy bread, cinnamon, oodles of sugar, and more butter than I care to mention all tied together with an eggy base. Aside from tracking down the necessary ingredients it was a piece of cake to make. Just follow the directions to layer everything in a loaf pan and the next day you'll have breakfast waiting to go in the oven.

My only complaint is that mine didn't turn out as cohesive as hers. The filling bubbled out everywhere and was almost a little too runny. I might try it with less butter next time to help prevent that and to cut back on the calorie punch at the end. I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I only got four servings out of this. What can I say? Those two weeks of anticipation gave me more time to build up my hunger. That and I still had strawberries left on my plate after I finished the thin slice I'd first carved out for myself so I simply had to go back for seconds. If you do the math you'll realize that means I ate about half a stick of butter with each portion. Ouch! Try to not hold that against me.

It's also a little tricky pouring the batter between each layer after you've taken the time to press them all down as much as possible. She says the reason for not doing this as you go along is so the bread can be as compact as possible, but I had trouble doing it without tearing a lot of my bread. Might be the reason for my slightly crumbly final product. I'm also not entirely sure I evenly distributed the batter in the process. Still, the idea is wonderful and the result is a tasty breakfast dish that you can proudly share with your family. And, let's face it, considering how much butter there is in this you're better off sharing it.

French Toast Loaf
Recipe from Gingerbread Bagels

12 pieces Texas Toast or a thick sliced bread (stale/day old bread)

9 ounces light brown sugar (a little over 1 cup packed)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
8 ounces unsalted butter, thinly sliced

10 ounces heavy whipping cream
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Mix together the brown sugar and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Set aside.

Whisk together the heavy whipping cream, eggs, vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. One it’s whisked together, pour it back into a measuring cup.

Take a loaf pan and liberally coat it with non stick spray.

Place 3 slices of bread on the bottom of the loaf pan. Sprinkle 1/3 of the brown sugar cinnamon mixture on top. Put 1/3 of the butter slices on top of the brown sugar cinnamon mixture.

Put 3 more slices on top and press them down really firmly. Sprinkle another 1/3 of the brown sugar cinnamon mixture on top of the bread. Add 1/3 more butter slices on top.

Place another 3 slices on bread on top. You’ll need to really smash it down. Sprinkle the remaining brown sugar cinnamon mixture and add the remaining 1/3 butter slices on top.

Lift the bottom layer of bread slices and pour in some of the batter very slowly. Continue lifting the bottom layer of bread slices all the way around the loaf pan and slowly pouring in the batter. Allow it to soak into the bread. Do not rush this process.

Lift the next layer of bread slices and carefully pour in some of the batter. Lift that layer of bread slices all the way around the loaf pan and slowly pour in the batter. Let the batter soak into the bread for a couple of minutes.

Pour the batter on top of the bread and press it into the bread. Place the last layer of bread slices (3 slices of bread) on top. Pour the batter on top of those slices and slowly press the batter into the bread.

If you have any remaining batter, (which you probably will) carefully lift the bottom slices of bread and pour in the batter all the way around the loaf pan. Continue pouring in the batter where there are spaces that could be filled with batter.

Cover the loaf pan with parchment paper and foil. Place it on a baking sheet lined with paper towels.
Place the loaf in the refrigerator and let it to chill overnight.

The next day, remove the paper towels from the bottom of the baking sheet. Bake the loaf at 350 degrees for 1 hour and until the internal temperature of the loaf reaches 160 degrees. (keep the parchment paper and foil on)
Then remove the parchment paper and foil and bake the loaf for an additional 15 minutes. If butter seeps out of the loaf pan, don’t worry. This happens.

Let it cool for about 10 minutes. Then slide a knife around the edges and invert the loaf. Cut into slices and enjoy!


Mim Smith Faro said...

Sounds delicious. I have to admit though that the picture looked like a strawberry vomiting bread when I first looked at it.

I'd still eat it though. Yes. I would.