Easter Breakfast or Brunch recipe

You are not going to believe how easy and GOOD this is:

[SIZE=“4”]Lemony Bread-Pudding French Toast

Adapted from [COLOR=“YellowGreen”]Lemon Zest [/COLOR]by Lori Longbotham.


2 cups whole milk
2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
5 large eggs (original recipe uses 6 eggs)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
12 slices white bread (I used Wonder Bread, but Lori suggests using Pepperidge Farm Original White bread.)
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
pure maple syrup


Bring the milk just to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the lemon zest. Allow to steep for 10 minutes and then pour the milk through a sieve to remove the zest. Allow the milk to cool for an additional 15 minutes.
Whisk together the eggs and vanilla extract. Add the milk and whisk well.
Butter an 8-inch square glass baking dish. Arrange the bread in the dish in 4 stacks of 3 slices. You may have to squish the sides of the bread together to get it all to fit in.
Slowly pour the egg/milk mixture over the bread. You may have to stop every once and a while to allow the liquid to seep in. Once you’ve poured it all in, press down on the bread with your fingers to submerge the bread. Cover the dish and refrigerate it overnight.
In the morning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a small bowl, combine the butter and brown sugar into a paste. Spread over the top of the french toast.
Bake the french toast for an hour or until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Let the french toast cool for 10 minutes and then serve with maple syrup and whipped cream or crème fraîche if you have it!
Note: This recipe serves 4 to 6 people. The only recommendation that I would make that is different from the original recipe is that you put the dish on a baking sheet before putting it into the oven. It rises quite a bit and you may have some liquid fall over the side onto the floor of your oven. The baking sheet will protect your oven from any spills.

Croissant Bread Pudding
with Pecan Toffee Sauce

4 large croissants or 6 small ones
1 pint heavy cream
4 egg yolks
½ cup of sugar
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup raisins (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F.
1.Tear croissants into pieces and place into buttered or sprayed baking dish, approx. 2 Qts. Sprinkle bread with the raisins, if using.
2.Mix the egg yolks, sugar and nutmeg together in a bowl. Then stir in the heavy cream.
3.Pour the custard over the bread. Press down the bread pieces until the bread is soaked with the custard. Let set and add more custard if too dry. You will most likely have extra custard depending on how stale your crossiants are. Don’t feel like you have to use all the custard.
4.Place pan into another pan that will hold a water bath. Bake the bread pudding for 45 minutes until golden on top. Cool 10 minutes and serve warm with the Pecan Toffee Sauce.

Pecan Toffee Sauce

3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1/3 cup whipping cream
1 TBSP Amaretto
1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1.Stir brown sugar and butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes.
2. Add cream and Amaretto and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 5 minutes and then add pecans.

You will have a hard time not eating at least half of this.

Adapted from Peabody at Culinary Creations by Peabody