BAKED BAGUETTE FRENCH TOAST

serves 4

You can soak this overnight but the texture will be more like a soufflé. If you do it 30 minutes before baking, it's a bit crunchier. But both techniques work well. You want the baguette to be stale but not as hard a a rock. You could save scraps in the freezer for a few weeks until you have enough for this dish. 


ingredients:

1 baguette, a bit stale

3 tablespoons butter

3 eggs

2 cups whole milk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 tablespoons orange juice

1 teaspoon orange zest

pinch of kosher salt

3 tablespoons turbinado sugar

powdered sugar for the top


ideas for toppings:

warm maple syrup

warm maple syrup mixed with warm honey

Nutella

jam


directions:

Preheat oven to 375°F.


Trim 1/2 inch off of each end of the baguette and feed scraps to the dog. Slice baguette in half. Cut into serving-size pieces (4-5" long). Place bread cut-side up in an ovenproof dish and butter the top of each piece. Don't overlap the bread.


In a medium-sized bowl, whisk the eggs. Add milk, vanilla extract, orange juice/zest, and salt. Whisk until foamy. Pour over bread. Flip the pieces around every 10 minutes or so to make sure both sides are soaking up the liquid . Leave in the liquid for about 30 minutes total. You want the bread to be wet but not soggy and falling apart. When you bake it, the bread should be resting in a small pool of the liquid but not drowning in it. You might need to pour off a few tablespoons of the liquid if the bread doesn't soak most of it up.


Make sure all pieces are cut-side up. Sprinkle turbinado sugar all over the top. Bake until the bread is puffed up and golden (30-40 minutes). You might need to throw it under the broiler for optimum crispy crunchy caramelized beauty. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and eat right away (but it does reheat nicely). Serve with optional toppings listed above.


DASH AND BELLA
http://www.dashandbella.blogspot.com
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