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French Toast Strata

Total Time

Prep: 10 min. + chilling Bake: 35 min. + standing

Makes

8 servings (1 cup syrup)

I'm always on the lookout for different breakfast and brunch ideas. I like to serve this easy make-ahead casserole when we have out-of-town guests. —Jill Middleton, Baldwinsville, New York

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf (1 pound) cinnamon bread, cubed
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, cubed
  • 8 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2-1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • CIDER SYRUP:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Directions

  1. Arrange half of the bread cubes in a greased 13x9-in. baking dish. Layer with cream cheese and remaining bread. In a blender, combine the eggs, milk, butter and maple syrup; cover and process until smooth. Pour over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
  3. For syrup, in a small saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon. Gradually whisk in cider and lemon juice. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in butter until melted. Serve warm with strata.

Nutrition Facts

1 piece: 578 calories, 34g fat (17g saturated fat), 285mg cholesterol, 537mg sodium, 58g carbohydrate (35g sugars, 4g fiber), 17g protein.

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