French Toast Eat Your Heart Out
Updated: Apr 13, 2018
I simply do not care how long I have lived in California, I am a southern girl at heart. I love southern chivalry, I immediately want to jump on Stephen when he opens my car door. I like to teach my kids to say “Yes Ma’am” and “No Sir". I don’t like sweet tea but I love to say “sweeeeeetttt teaaaaaa, hooonnneeeeyyyy” in my sweetest southern draw and I love a good casserole. There are very few things that will become of importance to me other than a good casserole. Pretty much, as a southern woman, I like to make anything a casserole.
Photos by Lily Ro Photography (@litlyro)
My Aunt Patsy lives in Nashville, Tennessee and years ago she shared her French Toast Casserole with me. I have fond memories of her making it every year on the night before Thanksgiving. Mostly because Greeks are always in the kitchen and also because, who doesn’t need more carbs on Thanksgiving day? The real draw is that you can make it the night before that way no one is taking up space in the kitchen for breakfast on Thanksgiving day. And those of you who know me, know that I have a big ole fat Greek family. Stephen learned very early on that there are way too many cooks in our kitchen!!
I have taken Aunt Patsy’s French Toast Casserole tradition and made it my own by serving it to the Stagliano family every Christmas Day morning for the last seven years. Even my mother in law, who picks and chooses her carbs on the daily, loves it!
I have made it strictly by the recipe several years in a row and in the last few years I have become daring and added fresh berries inside my casserole as well. There is something so delightful about biting into a piping hot blueberry in the middle of your casserole. Yummy!!
This one is for you Aunt Patsy. My fondest memories are of being in the kitchen with my big fat Greek family making food and sharing stories…..and bloody mary’s on Thanksgiving day. Enjoy!
French Toast Casserole Ingredients:
1 & ½ loaf’s of Artesano White Bakery Bread (Since I’ve had Children, I have begun to cut the edges off)
1-2 Teaspoons of Cinnamon (I usually use 2 because I LOVE CINNAMON)
1-2 cups of Heavy Cream (I most always uses the full 2 cups because I’m obsessive and like to make sure every square inch is wet. I’ve got issues)
1 8 oz block of cream cheese
Directions: 1. Spray baking dish with non- stick spray. 2. Tear or cut bread into pieces. Place into baking dish. 3. **If you are adding fresh berries to your casserole, now is the time to do so. Toss in some fresh berries while piling in the bread. 4. Beat cream cheese at medium speed in an electric mixer (or with a hand mixer in separate bowl) until smooth. Add eggs 1 at a time until blended. Then add the heavy cream. I always use more heavy whipping cream than it calls for because I like to make sure I have more than enough to soak my bread. 5. Pour cream cheese mixture over the top of the bread and refrigerate overnight. 6. In the morning, remove from refrigerator and let stand on the counter for at least 30 minutes. 7. Bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until the top look lightly browned but the casserole is still slightly “jiggly”. 8. Sprinkle the top with powdered sugar, fresh strawberries, blueberries, and serve with Maple Syrup.