6 slices sandwich bread (or kind of your choice!)
1 cup milk or light cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbs brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon (optional)
Grease a 8"x8" glass baking dish with butter. Cube up your bread (approximately 1" squares, but you don't need to be precise!), and toss it in your baking dish. Lightly press down.
*As you can see in the photos, I leave my crusts on the bread... I usually only have sandwich bread in my cupboard so they're pretty soft. If your bread is pretty 'crusty', you can trim them off.
In a mixing bowl or large measuring cup, beat your eggs, then whisk in your milk, vanilla, brown sugar, and cinnamon (if using). This should measure to around 2 cups total liquid. Pour over your bread in your mixing bowl. There should be enough liquid to come up around the sides of the bread and almost cover it (if you don't have enough liquid, go ahead and pour some more milk overtop until you get the amount needed.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (to let the bread absorb the egg mixture), or - even better - refrigerate overnight, to have ready for breakfast the next day!!
Right before baking, prepare your steusel topping:
2 Tbs melted butter
2 Tbs flour
4 Tbs brown sugar
Mix the ingredients togther in a small bowl until well combined. Your streusel should have the look and texture of wet beach sand... kind of grainy and lumpy.
If it's a little too buttery (oily), add some more flour and sugar. Likewise, if it's too stiff and dry, add a touch more butter.
Crumble your struesel evenly over the top of your bread mixture.
Now pop that sucker into your oven! Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 - 45 minutes, or until it's golden, the middle has puffed up slightly, and a toothpick poked into the middle comes out clean.
Enjoy with powdered sugar, maple syrup, or fruit preserves. And, of course, a side of bacon.
** For an extra special treat, try this variation out...
Prep all your ingredients as usual. However, add only half of the bread cubes to the dish. Now mix together 1/2 cup applesauce and 1/2 cup soft cream cheese. Pour this over your first layer of bread cubes, and then add the rest of the bread on top. Finish as per the recipe above. YUM! You may need to add an extra 5 minutes or so to the baking time this way, but check after the usual 35 minutes just to make sure.
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