Elegant Make Ahead-Pumpkin French Toast Strata

This is one of those make ahead dishes that your family and friends will think you labored over for hours. Let the fridge do all the work overnight.

Pro tip: buy the best quality Challah bread you can find and let it get a bit stale.

An elegant Fall breakfast begins with my pumpkin french toast.

As far as entertaining goes, one of my favorite parties to host is brunch.

You can set everything up the night before, no fussing with appetizers, everyone is more relaxed and food for brunch is typically so simple to prepare. One of my favorite things to make is either an overnight french toast or an egg strata. This recipe is perfect for Fall brunch gatherings- the recipe features pumpkin and it is made the evening before. The dish bakes in under an hour and the only topping you need is warm maple syrup. No fuss.

Serve with fall stone fruits or berries, some delicious sausages and hot coffee and apple cider. Check out my apple cider mimosas for a perfect fall brunch cocktail .

Brunch- made simple.

Fall baking season is the best.

Pumpkin French toast Strata

  • 1 lb challah, cubed into small pieces

  • 1 3/4 cup pumpkin puree

  • 7 whole eggs

  • 3 egg yolks

  • 1/2 cup maple syrup, plus more for serving

  • 3 1/2 cups whole milk

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • 1 tsp ground ginger

  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg

  • 1 cup pecans-chopped, optional

  • 1 tsp vanilla

If you want a VERY rich bread pudding, you can add a block of softened cream cheese to the mixture, but we like it either way.

Method- total time 10 hours, baking time- 50 minutes

  • Butter a 9 x 13 x 2 inch cassserole. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, eggs, egg yolks, syrup, milk, sugar, spices, vanilla and pecans. Add bread to bowl and gently fold until bread is completeld coated. Pour into prepared casserole dish.
    Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
  • Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake covered for 40 minutes. Unover and bake an additonal 5- 10 minutes until center is set and top is golden brown.
    Serve with warm maple syrup.
You can pour the custard over the bread right into the casserole or mix it together in a large bowl.
Elegant entertaining for brunch is effortless with an overnight strata.
When are they going to invent “Smell-Net?”
I set this fall table with my antique sterling, burled wood chargers, custom linens from Rustic Moose Home Decor ( on Etsy), English Village vintage plates and Williams Sonoma Glassware.
Breakfast is served
Golden Retrievers make the best breakfast hosts.

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