What’s better than breakfast in bed? - WFSB 3 Connecticut

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What’s better than breakfast in bed?

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Chef Bailey is back with what may be the best Valentine’s Day gift yet.  Breakfast in bed!  Today it’s all about French toast; cinnamon strawberry, chocolate banana, and orange laced French toast casserole.  For more delicious recipes, visit Chef Bailey’s website.

 Cinnamon Strawberry French Toast

1 tub (8 oz.) lite cream cheese spread

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

12 slices whole wheat bread

1-1/2 cups sliced strawberries

4 eggs 1/2 cup fat-free milk

2-1/2 cups Honey Bunches of Oats Honey Roasted cereal, coarsely crushed

3/4 cup maple-flavored or pancake syrup

Directions

Preheat oven to 450 F.

Combine cream cheese spread and cinnamon. Spread 1 Tbsp. of the cream cheese mixture onto each bread slice. Cover half of each bread slice with strawberries; fold bread in half to enclose strawberries.

Beat eggs and milk with wire whisk in shallow dish until well blended. Dip stuffed bread slices into egg mixture, then in cereal, turning to evenly coat both sides of each stuffed bread slice with cereal. Gently press cereal into both sides of bread to secure. Place on lightly greased or parchment paper-covered baking sheet.

Bake 7 to 9 min. or until golden brown. Serve warm with the syrup.

Orange Laced French Toast Casserole with Caremelized Bacon

?           1 pound bacon, divided

?           4 oz cream cheese, softened

?           1 cup heavy cream

?           2 tbsp orange zest

?           8 eggs

?           1/4 cup maple syrup

?           Orange slices for garnish

?           1 (1 lb) loaf french bread, slice into 1/2 in. slices (12)

?           1.5 cups milk

?           1 tsp ground cinnamon

?           1 orange, juiced

?           8 tbsp butter, melted

?           Confectioner's sugar for garnish

?           3/4 cup light brown sugar

In a medium skillet, cook 1/2 lb. of bacon until cooked through not quite crispy. Drain on paper towels. Spread a thin layer of cream cheese on one side of each slice of French bread. Place bread slices in a greased 9x13x2 baking dish. Layer on cooked bacon slices. Top with another layer of the cream cheese-French bread slices. Blend eggs, milk, cinnamon, orange zest, orange juice, butter and maple syrup until well combined. Pour mixture evenly over bread. Use a spatula to slightly press layers down to moisten. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Put in cold oven straight from refrigerator and bake at 325 degrees F for 60-90 minutes or until center is set and edges are golden brown. Casserole may need to be covered with foil midway through baking process if it looks like it's getting too brown. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Dust with confectioner's sugar and garnish with caramelized bacon slices (instructions below) and oranges. Serve alongside warm maple syrup.

For Caramelized Bacon:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking tray with aluminum foil. Place sugar in plastic bag. Add 1/2 lb. of bacon to the bag and toss to coat with sugar. Transfer bacon to a baking rack set on the aluminum lined baking tray. Bake bacon until dark golden brown, turning once, about 8 minutes per side. Allow to cool.

Chocolate Banana French Toast

.           2 ripe bananas

.           4 eggs

.           3/4 cup milk

.           1/4 cup (1/2-stick) butter, melted

.           4 tablespoons sugar, divided

.           1 teaspoon vanilla extract

.           1 (12-ounce) loaf French bread, cut into 1-inch pieces

.           1/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips

.          

            Preheat oven to 400 degree F. Coat a 9" x 13" baking dish with cooking spray.

            In a large bowl, mash bananas with a fork and add the eggs, milk, melted butter, 3 tablespoons

            sugar, and the vanilla; mix until well beaten. Add bread and toss until completely coated.

            Pour into prepared baking dish then sprinkle with chocolate chips and remaining 1 tablespoon

            sugar. Bake 18 to 20 minutes, or until set and golden. Cut into squares, and serve.