Crème Brûlée Lost Bread
PREP TIME: 1 ½ hours

One of the most interesting breakfast dishes came about because of a need to use stale or "lost bread." There are numerous recipes in and around New Orleans for this traditional dish, but Crème Brûlée is one of the most unique.


  • 12 French bread croutons, cut 1-inch thick
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 2 tbsps honey
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp praline liqueur or Frangelico

French bread croutons should be cut out of a baguette-style loaf. These slices should be approximately 2 ½ - 3 inched in diameter and 1 inch thick. In a cast iron skillet, combine butter, brown sugar and honey over medium-high heat. Cook mixture, stirring constantly, until bubbly and sugar has dissolved. Pour Brûlée into the bottom of a 13" x 19" x 2" baking dish. Allow Brûlée to cool slightly then top with the French bread croutons. In a large mixing bowl, whisk eggs, milk, whipping cream, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and liqueur. Blend thoroughly the pour evenly over the croutons. Using the tips of your fingers, press bread down gently to force the custard into the croutons without breaking. Cover dish with clear wrap and chill overnight. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Allow custard to sit out at room temperature, approximately 1 hour. Bake, uncovered, until French toast is puffed and edges of the croutons are golden brown, approximately 40 minutes. Allow to cool 10 minutes prior to serving. When ready to serve, remove 2 of the Lost Bread Croutons per guest and invert them onto the center of a 10-inch plate. Top with powdered sugar and drizzle lightly with honey.

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