Stuffed Apricot French Toast

The holiday season is here and dishes that can be made in advance are a great time saver. Imagine Christmas morning your family waking to the smell of sweet goodness of french toast and all you had to do that morning was to top it with a nutty strudel and toss it in the oven. Bake it while they sleep or bake it while opening the gifts that Santa had left. Either way it is so convenient because the majority of the work was done the night before.

This is a great brunch idea. Take this simple dish and you will be the star of the party. The presentation looks like you slaved away for hours, but in actuality the hardest part was slicing the bread. You may make this dish the same day, just make sure that you let it set at least an hour so the bread has a chance to soak up all that eggy goodness.

This dish is very versatile. If apricot doesn't appeal to you, use your favorite fruit and jam. Mix up the flavor combinations, maybe use orange marmalade and some fresh cranberries or peanut butter and jelly. Add cream cheese to your favorite flavors. For more simplicity use canned pie filling. Any way you serve it up I am sure it will be good. Another idea....use eggnog as your egg base. Now that would be a rich and tasty addition. Any way you prepare it, it will be good. And as always, make it your own.


1 loaf french bread, sliced 1 1/2" thick
2 jars of apricot jam
10 apricots, halved, pitts removed
10 eggs
2 c milk
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon

1 c brown sugar
1/2 c butter, cubed
1 c chopped pecans
2 Tbsp maple syrup

Arrange 1/2 of the slices of bread in a greased 9x13 pan.  Arrange the fruit on top of the bread, spread with jam, and top with remaining bread slices. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, milk, cinnamon and vanilla. Pour mix over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, combine the brown sugar and butter in a small bowl until it resembles crumbs, add nuts and syrup. Sprinkle over the french toast. Bake uncovered for 40 minutes until egg mixture is set and knife comes out clean when inserted near the center. 



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