I recently proofread a cookbook, which was an experience in and of itself. Making sure all the measurements corresponded, that the hours and minutes and servings were consistent—a perfectionist’s nightmare, actually. On the other hand, the task appealed to that organizational side of mine so much, I’d do it again in a heartbeat. (And I’m so thankful to the publishing company that hired me to work on it. )

The cookbook project (and the fact that I have a container of week-old croissants in the bread drawer) reminded me that I had a few recipes I’d been meaning to share. Like I often say when I post a recipe, this isn’t a recipe blog. I love to bake (though I can do without cooking) and I want to make sure the family-favorite recipes are easily accessible to the kids when they want them. I’m not just Mom, cook, maid, chauffeur, overall organizer; I’m the recipe sharer too.

Full disclosure: the two kids in my house who won’t touch a warm-fruit creation didn’t, as expected, touch this dish. But one of the children who isn’tt he biggest fan of cream cheese (a light shmear on the bagel will do, thank you), enjoyed this enough that she was the first to taste the newest batch.  (In case you’re interested, the original recipe can be found here.)

YUMMY CROISSANT/BERRY/CREAM CHEESE CASSEROLE

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (I used 2%)
  • 2 Tbs maple syrup
  • 1 Tbs vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (I always add more)
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 12 cups,day-old croissants (or older), torn into pieces
  • 1 jar (10 oz.) fruit preserves (we used raspberry)
  • 8 oz. cream cheese (either the block kind, cut into small cubes or scoopfuls of the whipped version)
  • 6 Tbs. cold salted butter, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup fresh berries (blueberries, strawberries, or blackberries)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • powdered sugar and maple syrup (for serving, if desired)

DIRECTIONS

1. Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with butter and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Add the croissants and toss with egg mixture.

3. Arrange half the croissants in the prepared baking dish. Dollop the jam and cream cheese over the croissants, using as much of each as you’d like. (I did not use an entire bottle of jam, nor did I use the full amount of cream cheese, since my family members aren’t keen on cream cheese.)

4. Add the remaining croissants on the top of the cream cheese and jam, and pour any remaining egg mixture over the croissants.

5. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (overnight is fine). When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

6. Place the thinly sliced butter over the croissants.  Then, bake the casserole for 45 to 50 minutes or until the French toast is golden and crisp. If the tops of the croissants begin to brown too quickly, cover the casserole loosely with foil.

7. While the casserole is baking, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Stir in 1 tablespoon powdered sugar or maple syrup, if desired.

8. Serve warm with whipped cream, fresh berries, and maple syrup.

I did  not serve with whipped cream, and the casserole was still delicious. Just the right amount of sweet from the jam and tart from the cream cheese, and I’m no fan of croissants. If I liked it, you might too.

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