When you’re having friends over for brunch, it’s nice not to have to worry about cooking in front of them. I like that I can make this dish the night before, by myself, listening to some music and drinking a little bourbon before it goes into the casserole dish. This alone time makes the time with friends even better the next day. And when I’m making it, I don’t really measure the alcohol. I’ve experimented and added way too much booze — bourbon, mostly — which seems like a good idea, but it just tastes gross. So restrain yourself, but go nuts with the combinations. I switch it up every time based on what is in my liquor cabinet — nothing clear, though. Other than that, I follow Smitten Kitchen’s recipe exactly.
—Kurt Soller, 27, senior editor of The Cut at New York magazine, NY
1. Start with your favorite buttery bread.
2. Slice into 1”-thick slices and layer it into a buttered baking dish.
3. Whisk together eggs, milk, sugar, and salt.
4. Add 2 shots of your favorite booze — bourbon, Bailey’s, Cointreau, Frangelico — and feel free to mix.
Deb of Smitten Kitchen says she uses three tablespoons of Bailey’s and three tablespoons of Cointreau. You can play around with various fruit and nut liqueurs, and add citrus zest, chopped nuts and/or dried fruits.