Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Morning after Gameday: French Toast Casserole; Waffle Biscuits


The day after a home gameday for citizens of any college town frequently means you provided a bed at night and you're providing some breakfast in the morning.  Bed-and-Breakfast!  I touched on breakfast at my house in Good Morning, Cinnamon Roll.  But there's so much more to tell you about the most important meal of the day.


Brilliant! Waffle Biscuits
www.plainchicken.com
For guests that wake up at my house, I either make a Breads and Rolls breakfast or an Eggs and Bacon breakfast or a Let's Go Out for Breakfast breakfast.  The problem with the third choice on a home game weekend is that in a small college town, it is not a relaxing breakfast out with the other thousands of people that were cheering at the game with you the day before.  So, breakfast at home is usually the best option for my house and the houses of my football sisters.  When I refer to football sisters, I mean the football wives all over the country who, like me, are married to the game.  


At one gal's house across town, she served one of my favorites, Paula Deen's Pecan Praline French Toast Casserole.  This recipe gained instant respect in my family when I debuted it one summer at our beach house and it is incredibly good.  My friend across town discovered it because it was a breakfast option she could make ahead and freeze.  Such a smart girl.  On Sunday morning, she popped the thawed casserole into the oven, made a fruit salad and loads of coffee and tea (we all had late nights) for her brothers and sisters in town from Indiana.  I have made this casserole with odds and ends breads and buns that have ended up in my freezer.  Make this and make your guests happy:


PAULA DEEN'S PECAN PRALINE 
FRENCH TOAST CASSEROLE

Ingredients

dash salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoon sugar
1 cup milk
8   large eggs
2 cup half-and-half
Butter, for pan
1   loaf French bread (13 to 16 ounces)
Praline Topping, recipe follows
Raspberry Syrup, recipe follows
Praline Topping:
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

Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1-inch thick each. (Use any extra bread for garlic toast or bread crumbs). Arrange slices in a generously buttered 9X13 casserole dish in 2 rows, overlapping the slices.
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 45 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden. 
Praline Topping:
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well. Spread over bread as directed above.



I texted another one of my football sisters, an offensive line coach's wife in the Big XII,  who I knew had her husband's sister and cousins in town for the game:


"What'd y'all have for breakfast this morning?  I'm talking about what we all do for breakfast when people stay over after games on the blog"
"We had waffle biscuits for breakfast....yummy"
{we proceed to text about our plans for Sunday since our husbands were working}   "...And...what are waffle biscuits?"
"You buy the cheap cheap biscuits and put them in the waffle iron.  My kids love them!"


Brilliant!  Cheap biscuits are hilarious.  They are like a hockey puck when you just eat them for what they are...a biscuit.  But when you make Monkey Bread, Cheese Bread or Waffle Biscuits, they are absolutely perfect.


Here is a great recipe for Waffle Biscuits over at www.plainchicken.com.  Plain Chicken is a fantastic food blog done by Steph, a college football fan herself and football Saturday chef.  Her blog deserves a post in itself for the football food there. Coming soon!


I think my post title "Morning After Gameday" takes on an entirely new meaning when you look at the Oklahoma State at Tulsa game on Saturday.  David Ubben, at ESPN.com, gave an update at 12:16am that the game was finally underway.   The Tulsa World reported the game ended at 3:35am.  No one had any idea they'd be eating popcorn and hot dogs at 2:00 in the morning, did they?  Weren't those faithful fans wishing for some French Toast Casserole and Waffle Biscuits?!