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Snappy Sugar Baked French Toast
Adapted from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook (Knopf, October 2012)
- 1/2 cup Snappy Sugar (NEW in Bulk, from Frontier!!)
- 16 slices (from a 1-pound loaf) white sandwich bread
- Butter, softened
- 3 cups whole milk
- 6 large eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 450ºF. Line two large baking sheets with foil or parchment. Place the bread slices on the baking sheets in one layer. Spread each slice of bread with butter (be generous), then sprinkle each slice with one teaspoon of the Snappy Sugar. Toast the trays of bread in the oven until the bread is golden, and until the sugar makes a caramelized crunch on top, for about 10 minutes (rotating pans after 5 min.). Reduce the oven temperature to 375ºF and let the toast cool slightly.
Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish. Cut two slices of the toast in half horizontally. Arrange the toast down in two rows along the length of the dish. Begin with the bottom half of one slice of toast, then fan 7 more slices in a row, finishing with the top half of the slice. “This ensures that those served the end pieces of the baked French toast are not stiffed with thin slices! (Smitten Kitchen)” Repeat with another 7 full slices and 1 halved slice of toast in the second row. Whisk the milk, eggs, salt and vanilla in a medium bowl and pour evenly over toast. Let sit for 15 minutes (or overnight in the fridge, covered) so that the custard is absorbed.
Before baking, sprinkle any extra Snappy Sugar (you may have a tablespoon or two) over the French toast. Bake for 30 minutes at 375ºF, until puffed and golden and no liquid seeps out of the toasts when they are nudged about in the pan. Cut into squares and serve plain, or with yogurt, berries, and/or maple syrup!