Raindrops on roses,
And whiskers on kittens,
Bright copper kettles
And warm woolen mittens.
Baked french toast smothered
With creamy pumpkin,
These are a few of my favorite things.
When the dog bites,
When the bee stings,
When I’m feeling sad.
I simply eat french toast with creamy pumpkin,
And then I don’t feel so bad!
I am in love. I am obsessed. I am going to add a few extra pairs of elastic-waist leggings to my wardrobe. My kitchen is alive with the sound of music.
Seriously though, a few of my favorite things are french toast, pumpkin and make ahead meals. I first made overnight french toast about a year ago for Christmas morning. It was so well received that I never felt compelled to tweak the recipe, but after staring at all that fresh pumpkin puree sitting in my fridge lately I knew just what I was needed to do.
I’m so glad that I decided to play around with an already perfect recipe to make it, uhh, perfecter (hush, you grammatically correct goons). Fiddling with ingredients can sometimes be a total crap shoot, but this morning I lucked out with an amazing breakfast that echoed the decadence of my favorite autumnal pie. This one might just have to make a guest appearance on our next holiday breakfast menu.
Overnight Baked Pumpkin French Toast
- 6 eggs
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1.5 cups pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 loaf day-old french baguette, cut into approx 1.5 inch thick slices
1. Beat eggs, milk, butter, pumpkin, sugar, vanilla, salt and spices in a bowl with an immersion blender until thoroughly combined (see the “tips and tricks” section below for my disclaimer).
2. Dip both sides of each slice of bread in the wet mixture and place in a flat, single layer in a greased baking dish. Pour remaining wet mixture over slices. Cover the baking dish and place in the refrigerator overnight.
3. In the morning, set the oven to 425 degrees and remove the baking dish from the fridge while the oven preheats. Place the uncovered baking dish on the bottom rack of the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned.
4. Place on a wire rack to cool slightly before serving. You can dust the french toast lightly with confectioner’s sugar, top with whipped cream or serve with syrup. Makes about 8 servings.
Tips and Tricks:
* I used a french baguette for my french toast, but you can use any pudgy loaf with the same results as long as they’re sliced thick-ish. Try whole wheat, the kids probably won’t even notice a difference! My bread was not day-old when I used it, so I cut it up into slices and left them in a bowl out on the table. That got them good & “stale”, and kept my recipe from becoming a soggy blob of bread.
* You might not use all the bread in the loaf, depending on how big your baking dish is, and that’s alright. I use an 11″ x 15″ dish and still have a few pieces left over when I use one of those long store-bought baguettes.
* You can use 1/2 cream and 1/2 milk for an even more luxurious dish. I wouldn’t do all cream though, unless you want a thick, goopy mixture sitting on top of your bread.
* I used my immersion blender to combine the wet ingredients because I’m neurotic about “thoroughly combining” things and didn’t want to get stuck with blobs of pumpkin or brown sugar or something. I dunno. But you can use a regular old wire whisk and it’ll be A-OK.
*This dish can be prepared and frozen for baking at a later date. Just prepare the recipe through step 2, cover with saran and foil and place it in the freezer (instead of the fridge). Defrost it the night before serving, and resume with step 3 the following morning.
What’s your favorite pumpkin-y dish? Let us know in the comments section below!