3/4cuppure maple syrupheated and garnished with a cinnamon stick
Place muffin pieces, cut sides up, in a 9×13 baking dish. Set aside.
Combine eggs, half-and-half, milk, brown sugar, orange zest, cinnamon, vanilla extract and salt in a bowl. Mix well (using a whisk or beaters) until thoroughly combined. Pour mixture over muffins in baking dish. Lightly press down on muffins with a spoon to help saturate with liquid. Let soak, refrigerated, at least 1 hour.
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch oven-safe skillet (such as stainless steel or a well-seasoned cast iron pan).
Sauté apple chunks for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in cinnamon, brown sugar and salt. Cook for 1 minute.
Transfer soaked muffin pieces to the pan with the apple mixture, arranging them in a spiral pattern with the flat cut edges down and the curved edges out. The pattern will resemble flower petals.
Pour the remaining custard over the muffin pieces.
When ready to finish the French toast, preheat oven to 425°F.
Bake for 25 minutes, brushing with 2 tablespoons melted butter during last 5 minutes of baking. Let stand about 10 minutes before serving.
Lightly dust with powdered sugar, if desired. Serve with warm maple syrup.
Recipe courtesy of MomEndeavors.com. Please visit Mom Endeavors for recipe updates and additional tips!