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A loaf of fresh baked bread on a wooden board.

The Queen, A Victorian Bed and Breakfast: Baking for the Neighbors

Nancy Noll, owner of The Queen, A Victorian Bed and Breakfast, in Bellefont, PA, is not letting her amazing cooking skills go to waste while she isn’t hosting guests – she’s baking bread for her neighbors! Nancy shared her story with us, along with a recipe for her famous Crème Brule French Toast:

“We not only miss our guests, we miss the smell of fresh baked bread and sharing stories with our guests over breakfast. So …. since we have no guests to bake for, we decided to bake for our neighbors. Thus far we have delivered a fresh baked loaf of bread to 15 of our neighbors. We plan to use 100 pounds of flour. Social distancing has been easy but we are finding that our neighbors miss face to face conversation as much as we do. We are already planning a neighborhood get together when life returns to normal. Normal???
This is the same bread we use for one of our breakfast specialties.”

Crème Brule French Toast
Serves 6 (to make for two, simply divide ingredients by three but do not reduce the caramel sauce unless you also reduce the size of your pan.

Caramel Sauce
Melt 1 stick butter
Stir in1 cup packed brown sugar and 2 tbsp corn syrup.
Spread on bottom of a baking sheet. Sheet should have sides, such as a jelly roll pan. Save clean up time by lining the pan with aluminum foil.

Mix 9 eggs, 2 1/2 cups half and half, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 tsp triple sec.(can substitute orange or almond extract) and ¼ tsp of salt.
When served at The Queen, we start with a home made French bread baked in a round loaf pan. When using a smaller loaf of bread you may need to use two slices to form your heart. Soak the bread in the egg and milk mixture until saturated. Lay soaked bread hearts on top of the caramel sauce. Cut a small V on one side to form the top of the heart and pinch the opposite two sides together to form the bottom point on the heart.

Bake and Serve
Bake 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
Serve caramel side up and top with a fresh flower, fresh fruit or shaved chocolate for a garnish.
To save more time for romance, this recipe can be prepared the night before and refrigerated until time to bake.

We love these stories of generosity

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