During the holidays, we often have our hands full with parties, cooking, and visiting or hosting relatives. Chaos seems to multiply like Legos, and there is simply never enough time! We needed an easy recipe to help combat that stress, while also making the holidays feels special (though of course this one is delicious anytime!). If you’re in desperate need of a relaxing weekend brunch with the kids, or a make-ahead dish that can feed a houseful of guests, this is the one for you.
French toast feels special, and is rich and comforting while still being a nutritious and balanced breakfast. But instead of one person stuck at the griddle making stacks and stacks of French Toast, we’re baking it. And since we’re Peas of Mind, we just had to throw in a veggie! For squash puree, we kept it really simple by buying pre-cut butternut squash, steaming it in the microwave, and then just tossing it in the food processor for a minute. No chopping or peeling! Butternut squash puree (you can use pumpkin if you have it on hand) adds a nutty sweetness and tons of Vitamin A and C, Potassium and Magnesium, while the eggs and milk serve up plenty of protein to keep everyone full and fueled throughout the day.
The best part of this recipe is that it can be assembled two hours before company comes, or the night before for easier hosting. Indulge in this easy treat for the whole family.
1 large loaf thick sliced bread (day old works well here!)
2 ½ cups milk
1 cup butternut squash puree
3 tbsp cinnamon sugar
2 tbsp vanilla
1 tsp salt
1 cup raisins or nuts optional
1 tsp pumpkin spice
Whisk milk, eggs, puree, vanilla, salt, and spice in a bowl. Plunge each slice of bread into the bowl, then arrange in a baking dish. Pour any additional mixture over top. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar and raisins or nuts (we used almonds), cover with foil, and place in the fridge for 2 hours to overnight. When ready to bake, pop the entire thing, (cover on) into the oven at 350 for 30minutes, then remove the foil and continue baking until edges are golden brown, about 15-20 minutes. For an extra-rich treat, we give the whole thing a good dousing of good quality maple syrup for the last 15minutes of baking!