Dear Home-Ec 101,
I have an overnight apple french toast recipe that we very much enjoy. Because the ingredients include apples, as well as a syrup/sauce made with brown sugar, butter, and corn syrup – I am wondering if I can prepare this ahead, unbaked, and then freeze. The syrup/sauce is placed in the bottom of the pan, then a layer of apples, followed by the soaked bread on top.
Would this freeze well for final baking the morning of eating?
I am hoping I can hear from you soon so that I could plan to make and freeze this before Christmas.
Thank you so much.
Baked in Bakersfield
The short answer is yes, you can, the longer answer is yes, but. You’ll need to be conscious of a few things to ensure it’s a successful endeavor and know that the texture will be a little different.
You should keep in mind that freezing changes the structure of fruits and vegetables, the apples will still taste the same, but they may not be as firm as they would be if they went from fridge to oven rather than from freezer to refrigerator to the oven.
There will also be extra moisture to be accounted for, mostly from the apples, but some from changes in the protein structure of the sauce. You can adjust for this by uncovering the dish a little earlier in the baking process -most I’ve seen are covered for at least part of the baking. Do not increase the temperature of the oven. The high sugar content of this dish increases the likelihood of burning.
Do not thaw your french toast bake on the counter, please humor me on this food safety issue.
Does the recipe mention whether or not the cook time compensates for starting at 40°F and not room temperature?If there is no mention of storing the dish in the refrigerator you’ll need to compensate for this. Reduce the oven’s temperature by 25° or 50° and increase the cook time. As noted above, this is safer than allowing the dish to come to room temperature.
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