Pat's French Toast
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I am quickly learning that I am very picky when it comes to photography, specifically when it comes to lighting. While in New York, I had the opportunity to assist food photographer Mark Ferri, on a number of occasions. Perhaps the most important thing that I learned from Mark is to utilize as much natural lighting as you can - avoid artificial lighting at all costs!

  1. It makes things look so much better. Crisper. Truer to their natural color.
  2. It makes editing a billion times easier for yours truly.
  3. There isn't that awkward yellow hue to everything.

I prefer taking pictures of food in the morning or early afternoon. Make sure you pick a room with lots of windows so that the natural light can flood in and give you the perfect lighting. If you really get into photography, you can eventually invest in reflectors which can help direct light to specific places that you want to highlight.

Moral of the story...Don't take pictures in artificial lighting. If you have to, well, best of luck! Not that I am making excuses, but the reason for there only being four pictures on today's post? Artificial lighting.

This is yet another recipe from my 4th of July holiday in Wisconsin. I told my mom to be prepared. I wanted to try out a lot of new recipes or at least cook a lot. So far you have seen two recipes:

  1. Skip and Go Naked
  2. Hoagies

Today you get #3 - Pat's French Toast!

Breakfast is definitely my favorite meal of the day. Most days though, I don't even eat a "real" breakfast, but when I have a big one - of eggs, bacon, waffles, pancakes, etc, etc - it is incomparable! French toast is one of the breakfast staples. I think my all time favorite is from Jane, a restaurant in NYC - their Vanilla Bean French Toast is to die for ... I am still trying to figure out that recipe. We got this recipe from a good family friend - thank you!

This recipe is great if you are having a group of people for breakfast - family gatherings, Christmas mornings, etc. It is a casserole, so it can definitely feed a larger number of people. You do need to prep the night before, so don't think you can make this one the morning of! Give yourself about a half-an-hour the night before and then you can throw it in the refrigerator until you cook it the following morning.

Okay - seriously, do you SEE the difference in pictures?! The first two were taken under artificial lighting and these last two are with natural lighting. The difference is huge. While the first two pictures don't look terrible, they definitely pale in comparison to their successors. Natural lit photographs look more appetizing, more appealing, more inviting. Don't you agree?

Hope you enjoy this recipe! We served it with some scrambled eggs, sausage, orange juice (Trop50, clearly) and obviously, coffee!

I want French Toast right. I am hungry.

Pat's French Toast

12 eggs, whipped 15 bread slices, cubed 1 cup milk 2 sticks of butter, melted 1 cup sugar 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix all ingredients together and place in glass baking dish. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350°F for 50-60 minutes. Serve alone or with maple syrup.