• 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • juice of one orange
  • (about 1/4 cup)
  • zest of one orange
  • (about 3 TBL)
  • 3 TBL honey
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 12 slices small bread

For my brunch on Saturday I choose to make baked french toast. It has a crisp bottom and soft top and is very sweet on its own, with no need for additional syrup. It can also be made with no milk, if desired, as you can substitute in orange juice. In fact, this recipe is traditionally made with no milk, but I re-designed it to suite my tastes.preparing

Begin by melting the butter and honey in a baking dish in the oven on warm, with the orange zest. This will only take a few minutes. While it’s melting, mix the milk, egg, vanilla, orange juice, and cinnamon in a bowl or large measuring cup. Take the hot dish out of the oven, don’t allow it to over melt/burn/brown. Spread the honey-butter-citrus evenly along the whole pan. I used my largest glass baking dish, the 11X14 size, because I was feeding a small crowd.melting Next I sliced my loaf of bread. I bought the best bread I could find at the grocery store bakery department. It was a multigrain lengthy loaf, but not very tall. I sliced thick pieces, about 1/2 inch or more each.

Place the bread into the hot butter/honey in the pan in a single layer. I sliced a few piece in half and squeeze them in between two rows of 5. Alternately you may choose to soak the bread in the egg/milk first, but I chose to pour the milk/egg/ mixture over everything, straight into the pan because I don’t like making extra dishes for myself to clean later. slicedAllow the whole thing to sit for 5 minutes, to allow the bread time to soak up the liquid. This worked well for me because I had mini quiche and sausages in the oven at a lower temperature and they were not done cooking. Once I removed them, I turned the oven up to 400 and put the french toast in for 20 minutes to bake. It was marvelous! My guests loved it, all had seconds, and I barely snatched this photo before the whole plate of it was devoured!

completed french toastConsider making these fancy french toast for a weekend breakfast, brunch, or party. I will make them a few more times while oranges are still in season and fresh.

*For a smaller batch, this recipe may be halved in all ingredients, but use all of the juice from the orange still.*