Brewster House B&B's Pecan Praline French Toast Casserole

Pecan Praline French Toast Casserole with Fresh Strawberries

A "Best of" Inn Cuisine, recipe courtesy the Brewster House B&B of Freeport, Maine

French Toast Casserole

  • 1 loaf French bread (13-16 ounces) (may substitute Italian or challah bread for a slightly different texture)
  • 8 large eggs
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • dash salt
  • Pecan Praline Topping (recipe follows)
  • maple syrup (the Brewster House uses & recommends 100% pure Maine maple syrup)
  • fresh sliced strawberries (or other seasonal fresh fruit) to top as desired (may substitute fresh blueberries, kiwi, bananas or other fruit that is in season where you live)

Slice bread into 20 slices, each approximately 1-inch thick. Arrange slices upright, leaning back slightly, in a generously buttered 9 x 13-inch baking dish; set bread slices in two rows, overlapping if necessary. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and salt, whisking well until blended. Pour this egg mixture over the bread slices, making sure all slices are covered evenly. Spoon some of the mixture in between the slices to ensure thorough and even coating of each slice. Cover and refrigerate the casserole overnight.

The next morning, remove casserole from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature while you prepare the Pecan Praline Topping (recipe as follows). Spread prepared, praline topping evenly over the bread before placing the casserole in a cold oven and setting oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Once the oven has come to temperature, bake casserole for approximately 40 minutes, or until the bread is puffed and lightly golden.

Serve French toast casserole fresh from oven, with pure maple syrup and a generous helping of sliced strawberries or other fruit fruit.

Pecan Praline Topping

  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well. Use to top French Toast Casserole prior to baking as directed above.