Overnight Bourbon French Toast


French toast, hash brown casserole, mimosas, fruit salad, banana muffins, peach bellinis, chocolate croissants, blueberry pancakes, bloody mary's, omelets, belgian waffles, bagels and lox, the list of brunch foods goes on and on and on! And I love it! 

I recently did a big super bowl brunch and it was so fun and delicious! Brunch is a great meal if you plan on hosting a larger group of people. It's one of those meals that is super customizable and gives you a ton of different dish options. There's a little something for everyone because there is just as much sweet as there are savory dishes. If you've got a smaller party of guests (2-5) you could do more of a sit down style but if you are having 5 or more guests, setting up a buffet is probably your best bet. Plus, it is always fun to get to customize your plate to your own palate!

The night before the big morning I tried to prepare as may things as I could to save myself some hassle. I laid out all my serving plates and labeled them for each dish and turned them upside down to prevent any dust. If you plan on serving homemade baked goods like muffins and croissants (which iI highly recommend!) making them the night before will save you a ton of time in the A.M.! Casserole type dishes can also be made ahead of time and wrapped in the refrigerator. One of my favorite make aheads is overnight french toast. 

I'll be sharing the recipe for my overnight bourbon pecan french toast below.

When champagne and orange juice married together they decided to make a delicious brunch love child... the mimosa. Mmm its sweet, tart, and sparkly. I love em' so much I made a little mimosa bar. It's the little details like displaying the juice in carafes instead of cartons and presenting some fruit choices that will make you the hostess with the mostess. I found these carafes at hobby lobby for a great price. I've seen similar ones at ross for decent prices and a wide mouth mason jar works great too. I did orange juice, pineapple-mango, and raspberry lemonade to accompany the champagne. Pick your favorite juice, fruit, champagne and you've got yourself a mimosa bar. 

My boyfriend, Jared, is kind of like Mr. Miyagi when it comes to working with a griddle. Wax on bacon, wax off pancakes. But for real, he knows what he's doing. I'd like to say I have the patience to make pancakes but I was already at my second cup of coffee for the day and it just wasn't going to happen.  A griddle is a sure fire thing to have when you need to crank out a lot of food in a little amount of time. You can usually find them at a decent price too. Target is my go to for simple kitchen appliances. Some other dishes I featured were: 

Hashbrown Cheddar Casserole

A hefty fruit salad

Donut kabobs

Assortment of Muffins

Chocolate chip and blueberry pancakes

Sliced ham and bacon

French Press coffee tray with mugs

This guy down here is my 

bourbon pecan french toast

 and its yummmmm! 

The very best part about it is that a good 80% is made the night before. For this french toast I used a loaf of french bread. I've had a lot of french toast on a lot of different breads and my two favorites are french bread and brioche. They are great at soaking up the egg mixture but are strong enough not to get soggy. Read below how to make this heaven mouthful of bourbon soaked carbs. Delish.

Overnight Bourbon Pecan French Toast

1 Loaf of French or Brioche Bread
6 Whole Eggs
1 1/2 Cups of Half and Half
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract or the seeds from one vanilla bean
3 Tablespoons of your favorite Bourbon
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon

For the Sauce

1 Cup of Butter
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
3 Tablespoons Bourbon
1 Cup of Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup of Chopped Pecans

yeilds 12 slices

The Night Before...

Slice your loaf of bread into angled slices with a serrated bread knife. Arrange slices in a large glass or ceramic casserole dish. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, half and half, vanilla extract, cinnamon and 3 Tablespoons of bourbon. Pour this mixture slowly over your sliced bread so that each slice is coated with the egg mixture. This will allow maximum absorbency and won't leave any pieces of your french toast dry. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate anywhere from 4-12 hours. 

The Morning of...

Preheat your oven to 350F degrees.
Uncover your soaked french toast from the refrigerator. In a small sauce pan melt butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, pecans, and the remaining 3 Tablespoons of bourbon. Poor this sauce over your french toast making sure to coat every piece. Bake uncovered for 40-50 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Serve with maple syrup. 

Happy Brunching!