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Baked Croissant Cinnamon French Toast Croissants should never go to waste. Not ever. Not even when they are stale. Turning stale croissants into delicious French toast or bread pudding is the ultimate in food upcycling. In this recipe, chunks of croissants soak in an egg-milk-yogurt mixture and then are covered with a cinnamon streusel. After one bite of this moist French toast and its crunchy topping, you’ll find yourself buying croissants just so they can go stale.

Baked Croissant Cinnamon French Toast
Recipe adapted by Pinch of Yum from The Pioneer Woman

INGREDIENTS
Bread Pudding
3 large or 6 small stale croissants
3 eggs
¾ cup milk
3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
¼ cup sugar
½ tablespoon vanilla extract

Streusel Topping
3 tablespoons flour
¼ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt
3 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces

DIRECTIONS
1. Grease a small baking pan with butter. Tear the croissants into small pieces and place in the dish.

2. Whisk the eggs, milk, yogurt, sugar, and vanilla. Pour evenly over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight in the fridge (or for a few hours if you are short on time).

3. For the topping, mix flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Cut the cold butter in with a food processor, a pastry cutter, or your fingers until the mixture resembles small crumbs.

4. An hour before serving, preheat oven to 350°F. Sprinkle crumb mixture over the top of the croissant/egg mixture in the pan. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes depending on how soft/crispy you want it to be. Make sure the French toast is fully cooked before you remove it from the oven – usually the top looks done before the inside is really done.

5. Top with butter and drizzle with maple syrup.

Serves approximately 6

LINNELL’S NOTES
1. I used 6 small croissants that I had on hand.

2. I also used lowfat milk and no-fat Greek yogurt with delicious results.

3. For some reason, the consistency of my streusel was a bit off, not as crumbly as I wanted. I added a touch more flour to the mixture to make it more crumbly.

4. French toast and bread pudding are very similar, so this recipe could be served as a dessert too.

Enjoy!

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A dose of caffeine sent my heart into a five-hour roller coaster ride that ultimately landed me in an urgent care center. While being examined, I described the rhythms of my heart to the emergency room doctor as “CLUNK-clunk” and Beedeebeedeebeedeebeedeebeedeebee . . . .”  He explained that one of the “wires” in my heart is “frayed” and he ordered an EKG. While waiting with me to have the EKG, my husband flipped through the pages of a magazine. “You should make these,” he said. “Make what?” I replied distractedly. “These bars,” he said showing me a photograph in a magazine. “They look so good! Go ask the receptionist if she can make a photocopy of it for us,” I urged. A few minutes later he returned, sat down and said, “She said we could take the whole magazine. And, on second thought,” he continued, “maybe you shouldn’t make these.” “Why not?” I asked. Sheepishly he replied, “I read over the recipe and . . . it has caffeine in it.”  Caffeine or not, I still made these buttery, coffee-flavored bars that are topped off with the perfect complement – a whiskey-flavored glaze. Maybe these blondies will make your heart race, too!

Chewy Irish Coffee Blondies
Recipe from Martha Stewart

Ingredients for the Blondies:
2 sticks unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups packed light-brown sugar
3 tablespoons freshly ground coffee
Salt
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup sliced almonds, skin on

Ingredients for the Glaze:
1 tablespoon melted butter, warm
2 tablespoons Irish whiskey
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Directions:
1. Make the blondies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking pan, and line with parchment so that it overhangs on all sides. Butter parchment. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and baking soda.

2. Melt butter, and pour into a mixing bowl with brown sugar, ground coffee, and 1 teaspoon salt. Stir to combine. Stir in eggs and vanilla extract. Stir in flour mixture until just combined. Pour batter into pan, and sprinkle with almonds. Bake 27-30 minutes, depending on how chewy you like your blondies (a shorter baking time results in a chewier blondie). Let cool completely.

3. Make the glaze: Whisk together butter and whiskey. Gradually whisk in confectioners’ sugar until glaze is thick but pourable (you may not need all the sugar). Using a spoon or a pastry bag fitted with a plain round tip, drizzle glaze over blondies in a rough crosshatch pattern. Let glaze dry 1 hour. Cut blondie into 2-inch squares. (Blondies can be stored at room temperature up to 2 days.)

Makes 24.

Linnell’s Notes:
1. The batter is very thick. Spread it out in the pan with the back of a spoon or a spatula before baking.
2. I like my blondies chewy, so I baked them for only 27 minutes.
3. I cut about a half-inch off the corner of a disposable, plastic, sandwich bag and inserted a round pastry tip. Next, I put the glaze in the bag and squeezed the glaze over the uncut blondie.

Enjoy!

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