Dairy Green : French Toastwich

GULLIVER'S CREAMED SPINACH

2 (10-ounce) packages frozen leaf spinach

3 slices bacon

1 small onion

3 tablespoons flour

1 1/4 cups milk

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon coarse black pepper

Thaw spinach and squeeze completely dry. Grind or chop bacon and onion very fine and place in saucepan. Saute bacon and onion until bacon is cooked. Stir in flour to make smooth paste. Gradually add milk, bring to boil and simmer 10 minutes over low heat, until thickened. Add salt and pepper. Grind or chop spinach until fine, add to cream sauce and heat through.

Makes 6 servings.

Each serving contains about:

129 calories; 572 mg sodium; 11 mg cholesterol; 8 grams fat; 10 grams carbohydrates; 6 grams protein; 0.96 gram fiber.

DEAR SOS: Recently, my husband and I enjoyed a lovely stay at Pelican Cove, a bed and breakfast in Carlsbad. We'd love the recipe for baked French toast filled with cream cheese and peaches, as served by our gracious hosts.

--MARY

DEAR MARY: This toast recipe is unusual in that it calls for applesauce or other sliced fruits or berries, such as peaches, over the cheese filling to make a French toast "sandwich."

PELICAN COVE FRUIT-STUFFED FRENCH TOAST

TOAST

10 to 12 slices white, raisin, cinnamon or egg bread

3 eggs

2 cups half and half

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup sugar

Cream Cheese Filling

Applesauce or sliced fruit or berries

Dash nutmeg

Warmed maple syrup or other fruit syrup, optional

Trim crusts from bread. Arrange half bread to cover bottom of greased 1 1/2-quart glass baking dish.

In separate bowl, beat eggs with half and half, vanilla and sugar. Pour half egg mixture over bread, then top with Cream Cheese Filling and layer of applesauce or fruit. Arrange other half of bread on top and pour remaining egg mixture over top. Sprinkle with nutmeg. Let stand in refrigerator overnight. Bake at 350 degrees 30 minutes, then remove cover and bake until puffy and golden brown, about 30 minutes or longer. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting into 6 rectangles to serve. Serve with warmed maple or fruit syrup or fresh fruits in season, if desired.

CREAM CHEESE FILLING

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 egg

1/4 cup sugar

Beat together cream cheese, vanilla, egg and sugar until creamy.

Makes 6 servings.

Each serving contains about:

495 calories; 398 mg sodium; 214 mg cholesterol; 27 grams fat; 51 grams carbohydrates; 13 grams protein; 0.08 grams fiber.

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