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  • January 2010
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Baked Blueberry & Pecan French Toast

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 (24-inch) baguette
  • 6 large eggs
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup pecans (about 3 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) plus 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups blueberries(about 12 ounces)
  • 1 cup blueberries (about 6 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

DIRECTIONS

  • Butter a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. Cut twenty 1-inch slices, on the bias, from baguette and arrange in one layer in baking dish.
  • In a large bowl whisk together eggs, milk, nutmeg, vanilla, and 3/4 cup brown sugar and pour evenly over bread. Chill mixture, covered, until all liquid is absorbed by bread, at least 8 hours, and up to 1 day.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a shallow baking pan spread pecans evenly and toast in middle of oven until fragrant, about 8 minutes. Toss pecans in pan with 1 teaspoon butter and salt.
  • Increase temperature to 400 degrees F.
  • Sprinkle pecans and blueberries evenly over bread mixture. Cut 2 ounces (1/2 stick) butter into pieces and in a small saucepan heat with remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar, stirring, until butter is melted.
  • Drizzle butter mixture over bread and bake mixture 20 minutes, or until any liquid from blueberries is bubbling. umm mine took close to 30 minutes. Check it at 20 if the center is still watery put it back in the oven and check every 5 mins until most of liquid is absorbed.
  • In a small saucepan cook blueberries and maple syrup over moderate heat until berries have burst, about 3 minutes. Pour syrup through a sieve into a heatproof pitcher, pressing on solids, and stir in lemon juice. Syrup may be made 1 day ahead and chilled.

I made this at 10PM on Friday night so all I had to do was pop it in the oven on Saturday morning. Blue berry’s can be on the tart side when cooked but the loads of brown sugar used really helped sweeten it up.

I loved the “make ahead” aspect to this recipe. It was so nice to just throw everything together after the day wound down and then just have to bake in the AM. Breakfast is pretty low key in our house because I neither have to time or patience to do anything elaborate in the mornings. Especially on Saturdays when my to-do list is 3 miles long.

When you put everything together the night before, the bread is going to swim. It’s going to look like way to much liquid. I was pretty worried about this but the hubs assured me that it would all be fine. It was! By morning all the liquid was absorbed by the bread and ready to go.

One thing I would do different is the butter and brown sugar that you melt together and drizzle on top, I didn’t feel there was enough to cover the whole 9×13 pan. It doesn’t need to be piled and puddled but some pieces were definitely neglected. I think I will add 1/2 T of butter and 2 T of brown sugar to stretch it a bit further.

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