- Yield: Serves 12
- Prep Time: 20 minutes, plus overnight chill time
- Cook Time: 45–55 minutes
- French Toast
- 1 (12- to 14-ounce) loaf challah
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 8 large eggs
- 2¼ cups whole milk
- 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Streusel Topping
- 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes
- For the French toast: Coat a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Slice the bread, then cut into 1-inch cubes. Spread half of the cubes into the baking dish. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until completely smooth. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar and ¼ teaspoon vanilla until combined. Drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture evenly on top of the bread. Layer the remaining bread cubes on top of the cream cheese.
- Whisk the eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, and remaining vanilla together until no brown sugar lumps remain. Pour over the bread. Cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the pan from the refrigerator.
- For the streusel topping: In a medium bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Cut in the butter cubes with a pastry blender or 2 forks. Sprinkle the topping over the soaked bread.
- Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until golden brown on top. (Bake it for less time if you prefer it to be softer.) Serve immediately. Cover the leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
The topping can be prepared in advance, covered tightly, and stored in the refrigerator overnight. Sprinkle over the soaked bread before baking. For freezing, prepare the recipe through step 4 and freeze for up to two months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bake as directed.