"Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
_ William Morris
, 19th century craftsman, designer, writer

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Gather: Sylvia's Creme Brule French Toast!

I believe the art of hosting house guests is easier with a stocked fridge and a couple of tried and true, crowd pleasing recipes on the menu.

(That, and candles and wine. No one will be able to see the dust by candle light, and with the wine they won't care...but I digress.)

My friend Sylvia Sagrera introduced us to just such a recipe and what we now refer to as: Sylvia's Creme Brulee French Toast. Sylvia served it up on a ski weekend several years ago, and now she is basically required to make it on every trip -or we hide her lift ticket.

One of those ingenious breakfast dishes that is made the night before and popped into the oven pre-coffee in the morning. It's a breakfast party on a plate.

The only way I can think to improve it is to make more than you think you need.

Sylvia’s Crème Brulee French Toast
(serves 6)

½ cup unsalted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tablespoons corn syrup
6 1-inch slices of challah bread (I use as many as it takes to cover the pan)
¼ teaspoon salt
5 eggs
1 ½ cup half & half
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
powdered sugar

Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.

Mix in brown sugar and corn syrup, stirring until sugar is dissolved.

Pour mixture into a 9x13 baking dish.

Remove crusts from sliced bread and arrange in the baking dish in a single layer.

In a small bowl whisk together the eggs, half & half, vanilla extract and salt.

Pour contents of bowl over the bread.

Cover and chill for at least 8 hours; best overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Remove the dish from the fridge and bring to room temperature.

Bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes until puffed and lightly browned.

Dust top of each piece with a sprinkling of powdered sugar.


  1. Bonnie, thanks for sharing. It sounds fantastic and I want it NOW! I bet it would make a great dessert with some fruit (preferably macerated with a great sauce) poured over it--sort of a charlotte. Yum!

  2. Sounds amazing! Your photo convinced me to try this some Sunday morning.


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