Citron Brioche French Toast Casserole

This French toast recipe is the ultimate hands-off entertaining brunch dish. Set this up the night before and all you’ll have to do in the morning is brush it with butter and bake.
Prep Time2 hrs
Active Time30 mins
Course: Breakfast, Main Course
Yield: 6 servings

Materials

  • 1 loaf Citron Brioche (found at the vineyard) sliced 1" thick
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter melted, plus more for pan
  • 6 large eggs
  • cups heavy cream
  • cups whole milk
  • cup packed light brown sugar
  • tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • ¾ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp finely grated orange zest optional
  • 1 tbsp demerara sugar
  • ½ cup crème fraîche
  • Maple syrup for serving

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325°. Spread bread on a rimmed baking sheet and bake, turning bread halfway through, until dried out and lightly golden brown, 20–25 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, butter a 13x9" baking dish.
  • Whisk eggs, cream, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, salt, and orange zest (if using) in a medium bowl.
  • Arrange bread in overlapping rows in prepared dish. Pour custard over, pressing bread down into custard to help soak it up.
  • Let sit 5 minutes, then press down once more. Cover and chill at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
  • Place a rack in top third of oven; preheat to 325°. Let bread sit out at room temperature while oven preheats, at least 30 minutes.
  • Uncover pan, tilt, and ladle custard back over tops of bread. Press down once more to submerge. Brush tops of bread with 3 Tbsp. melted butter.
  • Sprinkle with demerara sugar. Bake bread until it is lightly golden, puffed, and pulling away from edges of pan, and butter is bubbling, 30–40 minutes.
  • Let cool slightly. Serve with crème fraîche and maple syrup alongside.