For the past few days, all my local stores, supermarkets and groceries have been out of cream cheese. And by that I mean those regular blocks, not that “whipped” or onion and chive-flavored stuff. I can only attribute this to the fact that Christmas will be here in four days (!), which apparently has sent everyone on a cheesecake-making frenzy.
Now, cheesecake doesn’t figure in my home-based bakeshop repertoire, but I do buy loads of the gorgeous white stuff- many times to make my perfect cream cheese frosting, but mostly just to slather on a slice of bread and go.
Which brings me to today’s recipe, which takes the cream-cheese-on-a-piece-of-toast idea a step further. And what a step it is. Once you’ve made this for your family’s breakfast, be warned: they will beg you for it over and over again. Since it’s so easy to make (it’s done overnight!), that won’t be a problem, of course:
Overnight Cream Cheese French Toast
4 thick slices bread, cubed
1 8oz. package cream cheese, cubed
6 large eggs, beaten
1 cup whole or skim milk
8 teaspoons real maple syrup (pancake syrup will do in a pinch, really)
1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional if you like nuts)
Liberally butter a 9″x13″ casserole dish. Place a layer of half of the bread cubes in the bottom. Over this, scatter all the cream cheese cubes- then add the other half of bread cubes on top.
In a measuring cup, combine eggs, milk and maple syrup. Mix well. Pour over the casserole. Cover well and place in the refrigerator overnight.
The next morning, preheat your oven to 350. Sprinkle the casserole with nuts (if using), and bake for 30 to 45 minutes or until it looks nice and lightly golden.
Serve with more maple syrup, and some good butter.