French Toast Bread Pudding

picture this…

2 different scenarios playing out…

Scenario 1:

It’s a cold Saturday morning in December.  You and your hubby and kids have just rolled out of bed and are still putzing around the house in our Pjs and night robes and slippers.  The little ones settling in to some morning cartoons and you decide to whip up a batch of delicious french toast for the family.  Why not?  No place to go, no place to be, no time constraints…

Scenario 2:

It’s a warm spring Saturday morning and the family was up and at ’em at 6am, excited with the time change brightening up the mornings and the warmer weather.  Everyone’s raring and chomping at the bit to go outside and work, play. You are too.  You don’t have time to fuss around the stove getting breakfast ready for everyone, preparing, cooking, and cleaning up.  But, you’d still like to have a family breakfast to start the weekend off together.  Good thing you have that french toast bread pudding you put together in 10 minutes this morning.  You can just pop it into the oven for an hour and voila! Gourmet family breakfast without taking up your time!

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Let the sweet adventure begin!

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Break up a 12-ounce loaf of brioche bread with crust into 3/4-inch chunks and arrange them in a 11 x 7 inch baking dish.

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Start with 7 large eggs in a large bowl,

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and to this add 2 1/2 cups of whole milk,

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1/2 cup of sugar,

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2 teaspoons of vanilla,

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and 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (or freshly grated).

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Whisk to blend.

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Pour over bread, pressing down gently with the back of a spoon.  Let soak for 15 minutes.

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Cover with foil and make a little cross, or vent, in the center of the foil with scissors to let steam escape.

Place in preheated 350 degree oven for 50 minutes.  Remove foil and cook for additional 40-45 minutes, until custard is set and pudding is all puffed up!

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Cool slightly before serving with delicious maple syrup!

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Bon Appétit, Ma Chérie!

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Pumpkin Muffins- Incredible!

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These really are incredible.  They are moist and flavorful and so easy to make aaaaaaaand…….healthy for you to feed to your little ones for breakfast!

Too many times cake recipes camouflage themselves as muffin recipes.  And thus the reason that they are so widely loved by all.  Perhaps these little mounds of sweet goodness need to be considered cupcakes and reserved for snacks or dessert, however.

I always saw a muffin as a baked good that was delicious and nutritious and that you ate for breakfast.

But, I’ve got to tell you, it’s tough to find that combo, or yummy & good for you in a muffin.

I’m always tweaking recipes I have or find to try to create that delicate balance.

And this one?  Mmmmmmmmmm….was the feedback from my little Beach Rose.  And she’s got a good little palate.

Now, you try one and see!

Let the sweet adventure begin!

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In a large mixing bowl add 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon to 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour,

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then 1 teaspoon ground ginger (I always do a little less than a tsp, rather than more) ,

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1/2 teaspoon nutmeg,

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1 teaspoon baking soda,

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1/4 teaspoon baking powder,

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and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.

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Whisk together until well combined.

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Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients,

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into which you will pour 1/2 cup vegetable oil,

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1/2 cup honey,

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2 eggs,

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and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.

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Stir together with a fork, till mixed thoroughly, but do not overmix.

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Add 1 cup of pumpkin puree and fold it in with a spatula.

Generously grease a 12-cup muffin tin and then pour in the batter.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes.

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Bon Appétit, Ma Chérie!