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French toast as stuffed and jolly as Santa himself

The Associated Press
Cranberry cream cheese stuffed French toast is shown served on a plate.
If you can make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and fry an egg, you already have all the skills needed to make this incredible Christmas-morning stuffed French toast.We start with cinnamon swirl bread and make sandwiches using cream cheese spiked with dried cranberries and crystallized ginger. Dunk the sandwiches in eggs blended with cinnamon and a bit more ginger, then toss them in the pan. But don't forget the maple syrup!Want to get a jump on this the night before? Prepare the sandwiches up to the step of soaking them in the egg mixture. Refrigerate them until morning, then proceed as directed. You'll have delicious French toast on the table in less time than it takes for the kids to empty their stockings.Cranberry Cream Cheese Stuffed French ToastMakes 4 servings. Start to finish: 20 minutes.     4     ounces cream cheese, softened     1/4  cup chopped dried cranberries     2     tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger     1     tablespoon honey     8     slices cinnamon swirl bread
     4    eggs     2/3  cup fat-free half-and-half     1     teaspoon cinnamon     1/2     teaspoon ground dry ginger     Butter, as needed
     Maple syrup, to serveMIX together in a small bowl the cream cheese, cranberries, crystallized ginger and honey. Divide this mixture among 4 slices of the cinnamon swirl bread, spreading to just 1/2 inch from the edge. Top with the remaining 4 slices of bread to make 4 sandwiches.WHISK together in a medium bowl the eggs, half-and-half, cinnamon and dry ginger. Dunk each of the sandwiches into the egg mixture to thoroughly coat and soak them.MELT in a large skillet over medium heat just enough butter to coat the pan. Working in batches, fry the sandwiches for 4 minutes per side, or until nicely toasted and heated through. Add butter between batches. Serve warm with maple syrup.Nutrition information: Per serving: 470 calories, 230 calories from fat (49 percent of total calories), 25 grams fat (12 grams saturated, 0 grams trans fats), 230 milligrams cholesterol, 45 grams carbohydrate, 5 grams fiber, 21 grams sugar, 15 grams protein, 440 milligrams sodium.
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