So, this morning I found myself browsing on Pinterest. I have avoided actually joining because I could totally see myself sitting down for coffee in the morning, logging on to Pinterest, and then suddenly being like, "Wait, it's noon?! WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?!" Instead, every so often, I log on to the main page and browse for a few minutes.
This morning, while browsing, I saw a recipe for Carmel Apple French Toast. It sounded good, and I promptly looked up several other recipes for future reference. Well, future reference came sooner than I thought when I couldn't think of one single thing to make for dinner with the ingredients that I had on hand. It was a sort of celebratory evening for us anyway since Justin had placed well on the apprenticeship wait-list, so I figured what the heck, and came up with a recipe based on several that I had checked out.
Note: This is supposed to be an overnight French Toast recipe--or at least start it in the morning if you're making it for dinner like us. If you don't, it will be crunchy on top and a little soggy on the bottom. We didn't mind that, but I can see how it could be better if the mixture was more soaked through the bread.
-About half a loaf of bread (I used wheat), cubed. You'll need eight cups of cubed bread total.
-1/4 and 1.5 cups milk
-1 block Neufatchel cheese, softened (cream cheese is okay too)
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
-1/4 cup sugar
-2 tsp vanilla extract
-2 apples (I used Granny Smith) sliced and cubed (I left the peel on, but you can do whatever you prefer)
First, add half the bread cubes to a greased 9x13 pan, and then layer the apples on top of the bread. In a separate bowl, mix together the neufatchel cheese, brown sugar, white sugar, 1 tsp vanilla extract, and 1/4 cup milk (Here's your bonus fruit dip recipe: in my family, we use those very same ingredients and proportions of neufatchel cheese, brown sugar, sugar, and vanilla--NOT the milk-- creamed together to make a fruit dip that is to die for. It's also a great frosting for brownies/cupcakes). Pour the carmel mixture that you just made over the apples. Next, add the other half of the bread cubes to the pan. In a separate bowl, combine the 5 eggs with 1.5 cups milk and 1 more tsp vanilla extract. Pour the egg mixture over the entire pan. Pop in the fridge and let sit for several hours. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before baking and pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.
We baked for 50 minutes and the dish was still a little soupy, but obviously cooked through. Again, I think this issue would be solved by letting the whole thing simmer for a few hours to allow the bread to soak up some of the liquid. We also topped with a dollop of whipped cream.
After we ate, Justin said, "I think this qualifies as a dessert more than dinner!" It was good, but very sweet, and neither of us even used syrup. Of course, Lizzy went absolutely gaga over it. It was good, but definitely should be a bit of a special-occasion thing, I think!