Drunken Caramel French Toast
Part booze, part French toast, part bread pudding… how could you go wrong? In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if you already had the recipe because such things — i.e., amazingly good, crowd pleasing, make-ahead, easy recipes — tend to get around. I got it from my friend Gayle, who got it from her friend, Lillian, who got it from…you get the idea :)
What makes it so good? Well, just consider what’s in it: golden caramel, buttery challah and custard spiked with Grand Marnier. It’s the ideal company-for-brunch dish because you assemble it the night before, let it sit in the fridge overnight, then just pop it in the oven when you’re ready to eat.
Right before it’s ready, it puffs up and forms a beautifully golden, cracked-in-the-center crust.
1 stick unsalted butter
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 large challah*
1 ½ cups half-and-half
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons Grand Marnier
1 teaspoon orange zest
¼ teaspoon salt
1. In a small saucepan, melt butter with brown sugar and corn syrup over medium heat, stirring until smooth. Pour into a 9 x 13 x 2-inch baking dish.
2. Cut bread into 1½” slices and remove crusts. Arrange bread slices on top of caramel, making sure entire base is well covered (see photo below – you will use entire loaf).
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, half-and-half, vanilla, Grand Marnier, orange zest and salt until well combined. Pour evenly over bread. Cover with plastic wrap and chill at least 6 hours or overnight.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
5. Bake, uncovered, in the middle of the oven until puffed and golden, about 45 minutes. Let cool a few minutes (it will deflate), then serve.
*I use plain ol’ supermarket challah. If you want to play with the recipe, you could use a raisin challah or any other bread that you like.Add your review or comment!