Cream Cheese and Cranberry Baked French Toast is a sweet, finger-licking breakfast dish.
Cream Cheese and Cranberry Baked French Toast
Makes 12 servings
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- 2 (16-ounce) French bread loaves
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 2½ cups heavy whipping cream, divided
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 2½ cups brown sugar, divided
- 6 large eggs
- 1¼ teaspoons cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup roughly chopped pecans
- 2 cups orange juice
- ½ cup orange blossom honey
- 1 orange
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- Using a serrated knife, cut bread into 1-inch slices, discarding ends. Spray a 5-quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, ½ cup cream, and granulated sugar with a mixer until smooth. Stir in cranberries.
- Whisk together remaining 2 cups cream, 1⅓ cups brown sugar, and next 3 ingredients until smooth. Working with 1 slice of bread at a time, dip in egg mixture and spread 1 side with about 3 tablespoons cranberry mixture; place slices vertically in baking dish. Repeat with remaining bread, egg mixture, and cranberry mixture. Pour any remaining egg mixture over bread. Cover with aluminum foil, and refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat oven to 375º. Remove from refrigerator, and let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes. Bake for 20 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with ⅔ cup brown sugar, and bake for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with pecans, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes longer or until golden brown and set.
- Meanwhile, grate zest from orange to equal 1 tablespoon. Cut orange in half; squeeze juice to equal 2 tablespoons, and set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups orange juice, honey, zest and remaining ½ cup brown sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until reduced by one-third.
- In a small bowl, stir together reserved 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice and cornstarch. Whisk cornstarch mixture into juice mixture, and cook for 10 minutes longer or until thickened. Serve syrup with French toast.
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