This is a Paula Deen recipe ... and if you know anything about my favorite Southern cook ... her recipes just about always call for a stick (or two!) of butter! Suffice it to say I couldn't wait to try this recipe this morning, and let me tell you -- I was NOT disappointed!
1 loaf French bread
8 large eggs
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (** I recommend pure vanilla extract over the imitation)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Praline Topping (** recipe below)
Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1-inch each. (Use any extra bread for garlic toast or bread crumbs). Arrange slices in a generously buttered 9 by 13-inch flat baking dish in 2 rows, overlapping the slices. (** I used an oval shaped dish and it came out just fine)
In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and beat with a rotary beater or whisk until blended but not too bubbly. Pour mixture over the bread slices, making sure all are covered evenly with the milk-egg mixture. Spoon some of the mixture in between the slices. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Spread Praline Topping evenly over the bread and bake for 40 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden. Serve with maple syrup.
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well.
Enjoy! I sure did.