May 1, 2010

{recipe} Creme Brulee French Toast

Test Recipes Week 17! (Can you believe we're already 1/3 of the way through 2010??)

Last week I was in the mood for some good breakfast food, so I did a trusty search.  Coincidently, French bread had also been the freebie item at the grocery store, so I decided french toast was the way to go.  I wanted something a little special, not regular egg/milk dipped french toast.  Here's what I decided on:


1/2 c. unsalted butter
1 c. packed brown sugar
2 Tbsp. corn syrup
1 loaf French bread, sliced 1/2" to 1" thick
4 eggs
1 1/2 c. half-and-half (I used milk)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. brandy-based orange liqueur (such as Grand Marnier®) (I used 1 tsp triple sec and 1 tsp OJ instead)
1/4 tsp. salt

Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Mix in brown sugar and corn syrup, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Pour into a 9x13 inch greased baking dish. Arrange bread in the baking dish in a single layer. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, half and half, vanilla extract, orange liqueur, and salt. Pour over the bread.  (At this point, I spooned a bunch of the milk mixture over each slice to make sure they were nice and soggy.  All the liquid had been soaked up in the morning, so this probably wouldn't have been necessary.) Cover and chill overnight. Remove the dish from the refrigerator, and bring to room temperature. Bake uncovered 35 to 40 minutes in the 350* oven, until puffed and lightly browned. (Can place under broiler for a couple minutes too at the end.  Some people in the comments mentioned flipping the slices halfway through baking...your call, I did not.)

This recipe was very sweet, very caramel-ly, very sticky, and VERY yummy!!  I rated it EXCELLENT.  Actually, the taste was pretty much just like a caramel roll/sticky bun, just a little less dense.  Although this french toast was really yummy, I probably will not make it very often because of the richness.  Honestly, I think I like regular plain french toast with maple syrup just as much, but this was a great change of pace.  It also reheated very well in the toaster oven, which made it an easy breakfast throughout the work week.  Do you ever eat Brinner (breakfast for dinner)?  I love brinner - especially pancakes and eggs - and the leftover french toast made excellent brinner a couple days later!

{recipe} Peach & Orange Milkshake

A couple months ago I bought a blender.  And since then I have become a smoothie connoisseur. I recently bought a new cookbook: 100 Best Smoothies and Juices because of this fact.  When I buy a cookbook or get a new magazine in the mail, the first thing I do is look through everything and bookmark all the recipes I think I'd like to try.  So I hereby announce that I will be doing a Smoothie of the Week feature each week here on Crafteroonie!  I'm very excited :)  Hopefully I'll be adventurous enough to test some new fruits or interesting combinations.

Unfortunately, the first smoothie I tried from the book was a flop.  Read about it HERE.  This week's smoothie was much more successful:


scant 1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. peach yogurt
scant 1/2 c. orange juice
1 c. canned peach slices, drained (or use fresh)
6 ice cubes, crushed

Pour the milk, yogurt, and orange juice into a blender and blend gently until combined.  Add the peach slices and ice cubes, and blend until smooth.  Pour into chilled glasses and serve.  Makes 2 servings.

I think peaches are my favorite fruit.  It's rare to come across a bad one.  When they make an appearance at the grocery stores during those later summer months, they are hard to pass up!  (Watermelon is a close second favorite of mine, but it lost out of first place due to the fact that it's too easy to find a flavorless one.  And those darn seeds!) So this smoothie/milkshake was right up my alley.  It's hard to consider it a milkshake without the ice I the only one who thinks this way??  This was pretty GOOD.  Nice strooong peach flavor.  Very refreshing!