Saturday, January 10, 2009

Kids Can Cook--Overnight French Toast Edition

This morning, we ate the best French Toast I have ever eaten in my entire life.

I mentioned in this post how I have begun to bring the boys with me into the kitchen to cook, and how much they have been enjoying it.

So, during this week's trip to the library, we checked out a couple of books from this series of children's cookbooks and last night, took a crack at the first one: Overnight French Toast.

Ever since we checked out the book, Colin has been excited at the prospect of "makin' stuff". He sat down with the book right away when we came home, and identified the tools we would need. He asked me about ingredients--what they were and how they worked in the food we were going to make. I had him go through the book and look at the pictures, and pick out one recipe that he thought he would really like to do.

He picked out three.

I could not get him to consolidate.

So, we made a grocery list that included the ingredients for all three.

Who am I to stifle a boy who wants to cook?

The first one we started with was this Toast. The recipe was very easy, with regular ingredients and simple instructions that children can do. Colin did several of the steps (including slicing the baguette. Well--I helped him a little with that one. I'm not just gonna unleash him with a 10'' long bread knife, despite how responsible he may claim to be.....) and he really seemed to like doing it.

The best part? Eating it this morning.

It. Was. Delish.

I would certainly call it the best French Toast 'we' have ever made. We all loved it. This recipe will be one I will definitely make again--and soon!

For me, there were a couple of great things about this particular French Toast:

1. I loved that the recipe called for a whole baguette rather that plain slices of store bought bread--that translates to very fresh bread (which you can get at just about any supermarket nowadays) and also bread that you can slice as thick or as thin as you like your Toast to be. We like it on the thicker side around here (and, as an afterthought, I do believe that thicker bread worked well with this particular recipe, since it soaks overnight.)

2. You heavily coat sprinkle the Toast with a mix of cinnamon and sugar before baking it. If you don't understand why I think that is a wonderful thing....well....I don't think I can help ya.

3. For me, the best part was that the toast was cooked in the oven, rather than on the stove top. I don't know about everyone else, but making enough pieces of French Toast for everyone in our family usually involves several batches. Cold food is the bane of my existence, and generally, no matter what I do (short of putting it in the oven to keep warm, which *ugh* dries it out), the first batch is cold by the time the last one is done. Also, instead of standing over it and making sure I didn't burn it babysitting the Toast while it cooked, I was actually able to do a few other things--like scrambled eggs, hash browns, and cappuccinos. Mmmmmmmm.

Lesson learned: Make this more on Friday nights!!

Overnight French Toast
  • 1 French loaf of bread or baguette (a loaf will be thicker and shorter; baguette longer and very skinny--either can work)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup whole milk (I used 1%)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • butter at room temperature, for greasing
  • 4 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  1. Use a serrated knife to cut the bread into 3/4 inch slices. Set the bread on a baking sheet to dry out for an hour or two.
  2. Put the bread slices in a 9x13 pan, fitting in as many as you can.
  3. Whisk the eggs, milk, and salt together. Pour the mixture evenly over the bread. After 10 minutes, turn each piece of bread over. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  4. In the morning, remove pan and preheat oven to 450 degrees. Grease your baking sheet.
  5. Put the bread slices wet side up on the baking sheet.
  6. Mix the cinnamon and the sugar; sprinkle *grin* the mixture over the bread slices.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes, until golden on the top.
  8. Garnish with Maple syrup, powdered sugar, or fresh fruit.


10 comments:

Molly said...

Devin,

Lurker here. Not sure I've ever posted, but I love to read your blog.

I have made something similar at Dream Dinners with a "dollop" of cream cheese on top of each slice of bread, plus peaches and pecans.

Very yummy!

I have a boy cook in my house. He got Personal Trainer Cooking for Nintendo DS for Christmas. It "talks" you through each step of the recipe as you prepare it. The biggest plus - it makes your grocery list for you. We have had a lot of fun with that so far this year! I highly recommend it. (My son is 10. So for a little older child.)

Thanks for the recipe!
Molly

Nancy said...

Mmmmmmmm. I think if I had a loaf of French bread in the freezer, I would be making it right now at almost midnight! Alas, my freezer is French bread-less, so it will have to wait for a trip to the grocery store. Sounds very delish!

Aaron "helped" me make the frosting for his birthday cake. I'm just about to make that post now - complete with pics!!

Here's to boys who love to cook and their future wives who will love us for teaching them!! :)

Mamasita Chimichanga said...

I have tried a couple different french toast recipes and still have yet to find one that I LOVE! I am definitely going to try this one with the kiddos!

If you eat syrup on yours, I have got a BOMBLASTIC syrup recipe. (not sure bomblastic is actually a word though) I will e-mail it to you if you are interested. It's pretty simple.

Forgot to eat dinner, so now you have my stomach growling....

Kacy =)

Kara said...

yummy, maybe i will tackle that this week!

Jen said...

Sounds yummy! Brooklyn and I will have to try.

AmandaHoyt said...

Sounds very yummy! Thanks for the recipe :)

Julie said...

You know, I have been wanting to try overnight french toast for a while now. While I don't know if it's the same recipe, I think it sounds good. And I like the whole soaking overnight idea, as opposed to dipping the toast.

Thanks for the recipe!

Its A Corny Life... said...

I made something similar to this a couple of years ago for an easter brunch, and my Mom has been making baked french toast for years. I love, love, love it!!! I'm wanting some right now.

Lori said...

Hey Devin - I'm going to have to try this one the next time all of the family is home for breakfast! Hope you are all feeling better soon. I had this over Christmas and it was not fun! Of course, that meant that I couldn't spend much time with my grandson!! Take care and hope to see you soon!

Lori

Karie said...

Yummy!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am definitely tring that one out and getting that book, do you like all the other recipes????