By: Joy Schrock
NOTE: This recipe requires overnight refrigeration.
It takes approximately 15 minutes to prepare this dish that your family and friends will talk about for a long time. This is no doubt one of my personal favorites.
There are lots of variables to this recipe based upon your own personal preferences. Don't be afraid to adjust the amounts of the ingredients. For example one time I had a loaf of french hearth bread that was going stale. I decided to use it to prepare this dish. To fill the cake pan, I had to adjust the bread slices to 14 and do a bit of creative cutting to fit it into the pan. When I poured the milk/egg mixture on top, I realized that I needed more. So I divided the milk/egg recipe into thirds and added 1/3 more to thoroughly cover the bread. I also needed to add an additional 20 minutes to my baking time due to the additional liquid. It turned out fabulous with the french bread, but it's fabulous with just about any type of bread. Have some fun with this and improvise according to your own taste.
8-12 slices of bread (several days old)
Approx. 1 Cup Cream Cheese (Whipped)
Approx. 1/2 Cup Jam, Pie Filling or Fruit Preserves of your choice
8 Eggs (Beaten)
2 C. Milk
1/3 C. Maple Syrup
1/2 t. Salt
1/2 t. Cinnamon
Lightly grease cake pan (approx. 9x13, 1 1/2" deep)
Spread your desired amount of cream cheese on 4-6 slices of bread. Place cream cheese side up in cake pan. *Note: Depending on the bread type and size that you choose, it may take 4-6 pieces of bread to cover the bottom of the cake pan) Adjust the quantity of the bread accordingly.
Spread the other 4-6 pieces of bread with the preserves of your choosing. Place these slices face down on top of the cream cheese slices. You are basically making a sandwich.
In a separate bowl beat eggs, add milk, maple syrup and salt. Pour over the bread in the pan and sprinkle with cinnamon. Top slice of bread may float a bit initially, push down gently with a spoon to ensure all the bread is well saturated with the egg/milk mixture. *Note the bread will not completely soak up all of the egg/milk mixture. When you bake it the milk/egg mixture will create a type of quiche effect. Cover with film and refrigerate overnight.
Remove film, cover with foil, bake at 350 degrees on the center rack for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 25-35 minutes uncovered. Remove from oven and allow to cool until it reaches the desired temperature for serving.
Cut into squares and sprinkle with powdered sugar. (for presentation purposes only...not a necessity for taste), top with fresh fruit, serve warm with pure maple syrup. Enjoy!