~~~If you don’t already know, the voting has opened for Round 7 of Project Food Blog…have you checked out the video I made for the Barefoot Contessa’s Pumpkin Mousse Parfaits? I had a ton of fun making it and even though I was petrified of doing something like this, I’m so happy to be able to share another Smells Like Home milestone with you.  I hope you’ll consider casting your vote to help me move to Round 8!~~~

When it comes to new breakfast recipes, I’m game.  Totally game.  And if it involves french toast, I’m always looking for a new (and better?) recipe.  Pancakes were my family’s usual Sunday morning breakfast so french toast was a big treat, and my dad had the knack for making it just the way I loved it: a pat of butter on the french toast while still on the griddle and a good sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar.  Then…a drizzle of pancake syrup (yes, my parents still serve pancake syrup and I love it when I’m there) once on the plate.  There was something about that combination that always made my heart soar when I heard that french toast was up for breakfast.

So you could imagine my excitement when I saw that French Toast Bread Pudding was the first recipe up for the Barefoot Bloggers to make as we blog our way through Ina Garten’s newest book, How Easy Is That?  You may remember, however, my childhood aversion to bread pudding that I talked about when I blogged about Croissant Bread Pudding last year…well this aversion is gone.  I’m a reformed bread pudding lover now and this recipe certainly didn’t disappoint.  I added a bit of crumbled (5 oz cooked) breakfast sausage and some maple extract to the bread pudding prior to cooking it and both Kyle and I loved the end result.  I baked it last Sunday morning while Kyle was riding the tractor sucking up leaves in the yard and it was the perfect breakfast, paired with a hot cup of coffee, to warm him up from an autumnal early morning chill.  Aren’t weekend breakfasts great?