One Decision Down

December 14, 2008


If your December is anything like mine is right now, you’re drowning in decisions. Should we drive or fly? Does he want a sweater or a necktie (or, more likely, neither)? Can we make it to all three of these holiday parties on the exact same Saturday night? Should I or should I not eat that thirteenth cookie of the day? Sometimes it makes me want to curl up under the boughs of a big Christmas tree and hide from it all.


Alas, I’m a little allergic to Christmas trees and I’m sure it would be terribly uncomfortable under there, what with all the prickly needles. Kind of like spooning with a porcupine, no? So, instead, I’m trying to stay calm, not take on too much and check off one decision at a time.


Which is where this recipe—for a Deep Dish Brioche French Toast—comes in. Because this is totally going to be our family’s Christmas morning breakfast (I just need to tell the cook, my mom; minor detail) and it should be the recipe you tuck aside for a holiday morning too.


This recipe was written by David Leite (who you might know from his wonderful site or remember from these ridiculously delicious cookies). I’ve had my eye on it for at least a year, but it always felt too decadent for a plain old Sunday morning.


We had house guests this Saturday night, though, and it was the perfect excuse to trot out this recipe. So, on Saturday afternoon, I set to work slicing porous brioche into little cubes. Half of the cubes went into the bottom of a buttered baking dish, to be topped with smears of cream cheese and jewel-toned cranberries and pistachios. That got covered by the remaining bread cubes, before the whole thing was drenched with a spiced egg-and-milk mixture that smelled a lot like eggnog. And, best of all, you put the whole thing in the fridge for the night.


So, when we woke up on Sunday morning, after a long night of toasting our friends Gena and Alex as they became Mr. and Mrs., we just popped it in the oven. In the oven, it puffed a bit and toasted to a golden brown, while the cream cheese melted into an oozey glue, sealing the top and bottom of layer of bread cubes.


It beat hovering by the stove, flipping individual slices of French toast by a mile.


The recipe is here. My only changes were to use dried cranberries instead of raisins and pistachios in place of walnuts or pecans.

16 Responses to “One Decision Down”

  1. Gigi Says:

    this sounds like great holiday breakfast recipe. Thanks for sharing it. πŸ™‚

  2. ovenhaven Says:

    What a breakfast! I’m sure this would be a crowd pleaser on Christmas morning πŸ™‚

  3. sue bette Says:

    Looks lovely! I like the pistachio substitution, I bet it adds an interesting color to the dish.

  4. helene Says:

    Cranberry-pistachio combo sounds fabulous. I’m going to try this with lowfat cream cheese and milk, half the brown sugar, and probably omit the butter, too. I bet it’ll still be yummy.

  5. eggsonsunday Says:

    I love overnight baked french toast. This looks delicious! Very festive color choices, with the green pistachios and jewel-red cranberries…beautiful!

  6. Julie Says:

    Very intersting, I mades something similar with blueberries, but those cranberries sound great.

  7. A nice recipe with bread and cranberries. Kids enjoy this dish.

    Thanks for posting this holiday dish


  8. Aggie Says:

    I’m loving the cranberry pistachio’s one of my faves! I would love to have this waiting for me to pop in the oven in the morning! Sounds and looks delicious!!

  9. Rita Says:

    Hi Kristin

    How do I subscribe to your posts? I couldn’t find it on your main page.

  10. Thanks, all!

    Helene: Let us know how it turns out with the healthful makeover.

    Rita: I subscribe to someone’s site by using the RSS button in my browser’s toolbar. Do you not have something like that? Do others have this complaint? If so, I will look into adding a feed link to the sidebar.

  11. meg Says:

    I just decided to fly from MSP to O’hare…nothing like a last minute ticket!

  12. meg: We’ll cross each other in the air! We’re flying too, ORD to MSP.

  13. amylouwho Says:

    I can’t wait to try this! I love french toast, cream cheese, pistachios and craisins. Looks like a winner!

  14. Oh man! What a delicious sounding brunch recipe!

  15. Kevin Says:

    That french toast looks so good!

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: