Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Betty's Blueberry French Toast Casserole


Gluten free french toast casserole! Sound good? It was!

Over the weekend we visited my wonderful friend Betty. It's always a treat to visit Betty. She's a dear long-time friend. The great thing about Betty is that no matter how long it's been since we've seen other... our conversations just pick up where they left off. Time doesn't interfere with our friendship. I value that so much!

Of all the people I know who are aware of my special dietary needs... Betty really gets it. She called us before we came to plan our meals. She asked me to bring gluten free rolls for sandwiches and a loaf of gluten free bread for a casserole she wanted to make. That simple gesture of making sure I could eat safe food alone makes her an absolute treasure.

Betty is also a really good home cook. She had a recipe for French Toast Casserole and just the sound of it made my mouth water.  I can't remember the last time I made french toast... but it was definitely time to have some again. I helped Betty change the recipe so it was both gluten free & dairy free.

To be honest, I was a little worried about the outcome of the casserole since the directions required the bread to be soaked/flavored overnight with the eggs & milk. I thought that the texture of the gluten free bread would be too porous for that much soaking and would end up being a mushy mess.

As you can see from these pictures, that turned out to be a very unnecessary worry!

The casserole looked gorgeous and was absolutely delicious!! Moist (but not by any means mushy) on the inside and crisp & crunchy on the top. It was perfect! Betty added blueberries and I think that really made this lovely breakfast a hit. You could add other berries such as raspberries or even strawberries... I even think it would be really good with chopped apples -- but then again I think apples make everything yummy!

I honestly think you could use almond any type of gluten free bread for this recipe. Savory breads such as herbed breads or rye breads probably wouldn't work well, but any other lightly flavored gluten free breads should be fantastic! For this recipe I used 3/4 of a loaf of my Honey Oat Gluten Free Bread.


Betty's Gluten Free French Toast Casserole
Free of gluten, dairy, and soy
Adapted from a recipe by Paula Deen
Print-friendly recipe

Casserole:
7 cups cubed gluten free bread (I used 3/4 of a loaf of Honey Oat Bread)
2 cups non-dairy milk (I used almond milk)
1 tablespoon vanilla flavoring
5 eggs
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt

Topping:
2 tablespoons ghee -or- coconut oil
**3 tablespoons granulated sugar -or- coconut sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries, or chopped fruit of your choice -- rinsed & dried (optional)

Directions:

  1. Place bread cubes into a greased 9"x13" casserole dish. 
  2. In a medium sized mixing bowl whisk together: milk, vanilla flavoring, eggs, maple syrup, and salt. 
  3. Pour egg/milk mixture over the bread cubes. Cover casserole dish and place in fridge overnight. 
  4. Remove casserole from fridge 30 minutes before baking. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  5. In a small bowl mix together ghee (or coconut oil), sugar, and cinnamon. Evenly sprinkle over the top of the casserole. 
  6. If desired, sprinkle fresh blueberries or other fruit over the top of the casserole. 
  7. Bake for 45-50 minutes until the top of the casserole is golden brown & crispy. 
  8. Serve immediately with maple syrup!
Carrie's Notes:
 -  I definitely recommend using some type of granulated sugar on the top of the casserole. It really helps the casserole to brown and have that delicious crispness!! :-) Enjoy!


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I have submitted this recipe to Amy of Simply Gluten & Sugar Free's weekly series: "Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays! Make sure to stop by her blog today and check out the list of yummy gluten free treats for this week! 



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11 comments:

  1. It's so nice to have a friend like that, someone who thinks to ask questions and plan ahead. Those friends are invaluable. Especially if they can cook beautiful blueberry french toast casserole! This recipe sounds absolutely fantastic. I can't wait to give it a try.

    Miel

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  2. This looks SO good!!! It's awesome that Betty understands your food needs! I can't imagine how frustrating it is for you!

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  3. Oooh that looks delicious!

    I'm going to have to give it a try the next time my gluten free friend comes over for brunch :)

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  4. Oh my. Blueberries are on sale right now at our local market and I WANT to do something with them, but didn't know what. Thanks for the inspiration!!!

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  5. Sounds good and looks good! I've been wanting to make a French toast casserole lately. I've never made one gluten-free, and was also a little worried about the overnight soaking. When I saw yours listed, I knew it would be good. Can't wait to try it!

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  6. What a blessing to have Betty as your friend! Absolutely beautiful! This makes my mouth water just to look at it

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  7. Oh, I forgot how much I love French Toast Casseroles. They were perfect for leftovers as well i was in the mode of making them for a while and then forgot about them. I need to try this one out as it sounds AMAZING!!
    Great post, Carrie! Love it!

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  8. Oh my gosh this looks delicious. And yes, it is wonderful to have understanding friends, isn't it? :)

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  9. Miel - I KNOW! I'm so thankful Betty is so willing to make sure I can eat safe foods! It's a rare treat!

    Jenn - isn't she sweet! And you are not kidding about the frustrating thing!

    Kitchen operas - it's PERFECT for brunch! Let me know how it turns out!

    Debbie - you are so sweet!

    Kim - thank you so much gal! :-) I had forgotten how much I liked french toast too! Yummy!

    Mike - It SO is!! :-)

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  10. Lucky girl! This sounds so delicious. What a treat.

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  11. umm, YUM! will definitely have to make this! thanks :)

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Thank you for commenting on Gingerlemongirl.com. I appreciate your comments, ideas, stories, and feedback!

To send me recipes to try or for gluten free baking help, feel free to email me at gingerlemongirl (at) gmail (dot) com.

Sincerely,
Carrie

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