How to Make Crème Brûlée French Toast

Welcome a luxurious start to your day with “Gourmet Mornings: Crème Brûlée French Toast,” where the beloved rich flavors of a classic crème brûlée blend seamlessly with the comforting texture of French toast. This recipe transforms your breakfast or brunch into an elegant affair, featuring creamy, custard-soaked bread topped with a delightfully crisp, caramelized sugar crust. It’s perfect for special occasions or when you want to indulge in a decadently sweet morning treat.

Why You’ll Love Crème Brûlée French Toast:

  • Decadent Flavor: Combines the vanilla-infused richness of crème brûlée with the satisfying comfort of French toast.
  • Impressive Presentation: The caramelized, crackly sugar topping makes this dish a visual and textural delight.
  • Versatile and Festive: Ideal for a luxurious breakfast, brunch, or even as a dessert.
  • Simple Yet Sophisticated: Easy enough to prepare, yet sophisticated enough to impress any guest.

Ingredients Notes For Crème Brûlée French Toast:

  • Bread: Thick slices of brioche or challah bread are ideal because they are soft, buttery, and absorbent.
  • Custard Base: A mixture of heavy cream, whole milk, eggs, and vanilla extract creates a rich, flavorful soak for the bread.
  • Vanilla: Real vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste for authentic flavor.
  • Sugar: Granulated sugar for the custard mixture and additional sugar for creating the brûlée topping.
  • Cinnamon: A dash of cinnamon complements the vanilla and adds warmth to the dish.
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Recipe Steps:

  1. Prepare the Custard:
    • In a large bowl, whisk together 1 cup heavy cream, 1 cup whole milk, 4 large eggs, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, and a pinch of cinnamon until well combined.
  2. Soak the Bread:
    • Dip each slice of brioche or challah bread into the custard mixture, allowing it to soak on both sides. Ensure the bread is fully saturated but not soggy.
  3. Cook the French Toast:
    • Heat a non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat and lightly butter it. Cook each slice of soaked bread until golden brown on both sides, approximately 3-4 minutes per side.
  4. Caramelize the Sugar:
    • Sprinkle a thin layer of granulated sugar over the cooked French toast. Use a kitchen torch to caramelize the sugar until it bubbles and forms a golden crust. Alternatively, place the sugared toast under a preheated broiler for a couple of minutes, watching carefully to avoid burning.
  5. Serve:
    • Serve the French toast immediately while the sugar topping is crisp. Optional garnishes include fresh berries, whipped cream, or a drizzle of maple syrup.

Storage Options:

  • Refrigerate: Store any un-caramelized cooked French toast in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Add sugar and caramelize just before serving.
  • Freeze: Freeze the cooked and cooled (uncaramelized) French toast slices on a baking sheet, then transfer to a freezer bag for up to a month. Thaw and reheat in a toaster or oven, then add sugar and caramelize.

INGREDIENTS

For the French Toast:

  • 1 loaf French bread, sliced into 1-inch thick slices
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
  • Pinch of salt
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For the Caramelized Topping:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup (or maple syrup for a different flavor)
  • Powdered sugar for dusting (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Prepare the Bread:
    • Arrange the bread slices in a single layer in a greased 9×13-inch baking dish, slightly overlapping if necessary.
  2. Make the Custard Mixture:
    • In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, heavy cream, milk, granulated sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon (if using), and a pinch of salt.
    • Pour this mixture evenly over the bread slices, ensuring all are well-coated. Allow the bread to soak for at least 30 minutes, or refrigerate overnight for the best results.
  3. Prepare the Caramelized Topping:
    • In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat.
    • Stir in brown sugar and corn syrup, and continue to cook until the mixture is smooth and bubbly.
    • Pour this mixture over the soaked bread slices, spreading it evenly across the top.
  4. Bake the French Toast:
    • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
    • Bake the French toast for 35-40 minutes, or until the top is bubbly and caramelized and the custard is set.
  5. Serve:
    • Let the French toast cool slightly before serving.
    • Dust with powdered sugar if desired and serve with additional syrup, fresh berries, or whipped cream.

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