I had this recipe ripped out of a magazine and tucked away in my cookbook. I don't make french toast very often, but yesterday was a quiet day around the house, and it was pouring rain outside, and it seemed like a good day to try it out for lunch. I made some changes to it, but it fairly straight-forward.
FABULOUS FRENCH TOAST (based on this recipe)
12 pieces of bread, cut in half
1 banana, sliced
1 c. frozen blueberries
1/2 pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. maple syrup
5 c. milk (divided)
1 pkg. instant vanilla pudding
Lay half the bread in the bottom of a greased 9x13" baking dish. Top with bananas and blueberries (I did some of each, but you could combine them if you want, or try other fruits.) Lay the remaining pieces of bread overtop. Beat together cream cheese, sugar, and maple syrup, adding eggs one at at time and beating well. Gradually add in 2 c. milk and mix well, then pour over the bread. Cover with saran wrap for at least 30 minutes (or overnight in the fridge.) Bake at 350F for 40 minutes. While it's baking, heat 3 c. milk in a saucepan until just boiling. Whisk in vanilla pudding and let it stand for 5 minutes. Serve overtop of the french toast.
I loved the idea of making a big batch of french toast at one time, and hiding fruit inside it. I'm not sure the cream cheese in the egg mixture really added much, so it's probably not a necessity. The custard topping was yummy, but it made a much larger batch than necessary, and I am not a very good whisker, so it wasn't the prettiest looking custard you ever saw. But the french toast was tasty, and much less messy than dipping a piece of bread in the egg mixture and then transfering it to a frying pan, and doing that repeatedly until everyone has been fed. I'd definitely make this again, and have leftover custard for dessert.