Sylvia brought a Baked French Toast Casserole to a department breakfast recently and it was a big hit! I’ve made lots of breakfast casseroles before, but none quite like this. The sweetness of the French toast with the eggs and optional bacon or ham make a great combination! Sylvia put chopped ham on half of her casserole and left half without for the non-meat-eaters. When I made my casserole, I used chopped turkey bacon and really liked that. I also made a few other small changes that I’ve noted in the recipe below.
This Baked French Toast Casserole is really good, so I hope you get a chance to try it out! It’s great for a weekend brunch, especially now that the weather is cooling off some! You can put the casserole ingredients together the night before in a 9×13″ pan and pop it in the oven the next morning, so it’s really convenient, too. Special thanks to Sylvia for sharing her recipe!
SYLVIA’S BAKED FRENCH TOAST CASSEROLE slightly adapted by NancyCreative
Makes a 9×13″ casserole
- 1 loaf French bread, cut in slices about 1″ thick (this should give you about 16 slices of bread; I also cut about 2″ off the ends of the loaf before slicing it)
- 4 Tablespoons light Karo Syrup (I substituted 4 Tablespoons of honey)
- 4 Tablespoons dark Karo Syrup (I substituted 4 Tablespoons of pure maple syrup)
- 2 cups brown sugar (loosely packed)
- 2 sticks (1 cup) butter
- 12 eggs
- 2 cups milk
- dash of salt (optional)
- 1 cup chopped ham or uncooked bacon slices, optional (I used turkey bacon)
Grease a 9×13″ pan; set aside.
In small pan over low to medium heat, blend light and dark syrups (or honey and maple syrup) with brown sugar and butter. Stir and heat until mixture bubbles and remove from heat. Take each slice of bread and dip both sides in this mixture, then layer slices in the greased pan. Here’s what mine looked like…
If you have any of the syrup-butter-sugar mixture left over–I had just a few Tablespoons extra–drizzle it over all the slices in the pan.
Next, in a medium bowl, beat eggs with milk until well-beaten, adding a dash of salt if desired; pour egg-milk mixture evenly over all the bread slices in the pan. Then top with chopped ham or uncooked bacon (I just put half the amount of the bacon on one side of the casserole and left the other side meatless). Cover pan and refrigerate overnight.
In the morning, bake the casserole at 350 degrees F for 50 to 55 minutes (if your oven runs hot, check it at 45 minutes). The eggs should not be runny when you cut into the casserole; if they are, you need to bake it a little longer. You can cover the casserole with foil the last 15-20 minutes of baking if you notice the bread or meat getting too brown on the top edges.
My casserole got a little brown on top, but it was still very delicious! 🙂
On another note, I recently came across a copy of a favorite old poem that I hadn’t seen for years, THE TOUCH OF THE MASTER’S HAND, so I thought I’d share it. It was also recorded as a song by WayneWatson, and you can click here if you’d like to listen to it. In a nutshell, the poem is about how God can take the mess of our lives and turn it into something wonderful.
I found out a little more about the author of the poem, too…Myra Brooks Welch wrote it in 1921, after hearing a speaker address a group of students. Inspired, she wrote The Touch of the Master’s Hand in 30 minutes. She told others the poem actually wrote itself and believed it was a gift from God. It has been translated into more than 100 languages.
THE TOUCH OF THE MASTER’S HAND‘Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer Thought it scarcely worth his while To waste much time on the old violin, But held it up with a smile. “What am I bidden, good folks?” he cried. “Who’ll start the bidding for me? A dollar, a dollar; then two! Only two? Two dollars, and who’ll make it three?” “Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice; Going for three…” But no, From the room far back, a gray-haired man Came forward and picked up the bow. Then, wiping the dust from the old violin, And tightening the loose strings, He played a melody pure and sweet As a caroling angel sings. The music ceased, and the auctioneer, With a voice that was quiet and low, Said, “What am I bid for the old violin?” And he held it up with the bow. “A thousand dollars, and who’ll make it two? Two thousand! And who’ll make it three? Three thousand, once; three thousand, twice, And going and gone.” said he. The people cheered, but some of them cried, “We do not quite understand, What changed its worth.” Swift came the reply: “The touch of a master’s hand.” And many a man with life out of tune, And battered and scarred with sin, Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd, Much like the old violin. A “mess of potage,” a glass of wine, A game–and he travels on. He is “going” once–and “going” twice– He’s “going” and almost “gone.” But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd Never can quite understand The worth of a soul and the change that’s wrought By the touch of the Master’s hand.
–Myra Brooks Welch (1877-1959)
Hope you enjoy the casserole and the poem–and have a great day!