Leftover croissants make a quick and easy treat for breakfast or brunch, especially when they're stuffed with berries and cream cheese.
croissants (day-old or slightly stale)
cream cheese (6 ounces, at room temperature)
confectioner's (powdered) sugar
fresh raspberries (about 2 cups)
half and half
butter (1/2 stick)
confectioner's sugar (for garnish)
fresh mint leaves (for garnish)
warm maple syrup (for serving)
Cut the croissants almost in half, starting on the outer curve and slicing horizontally to form a large pocket. Try to avoid creating two separate halves; don't cut all the way through the croissant. Set aside.
In a small bowl, mix the cream cheese with 1/2 cup of the confectioner's sugar, and beat until smooth. Taste and add more sugar, if desired.
Spread some of the cream cheese mixture in the pocket of each croissant, using a cake spatula to create a smooth layer on the bottom half of the pastry. Arrange a single layer of raspberries on top of the cream cheese, and then lightly press down on the top half of the croissant to seal the pastry. Leftover raspberries will be used as garnish.
Combine the eggs, milk, half and half, vanilla, and nutmeg in a large bowl and whisk to blend.
Place a large skillet over medium heat and melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Unless you have a very large skillet, cook the french toast in two pans or in batches.
Carefully dip each croissant into the egg-milk batter and let it soak for 30 to 45 seconds. Don't be tempted to soak the pastries too long or they'll disintegrate in the batter. Transfer the croissants to the prepared skillet and cook, flat side down, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the pastry has turned golden brown. Carefully flip the croissants with a wide spatula and continue cooking until the croissant is hot and golden, another 2 to 4 minutes. If cooking in batches, add the remaining butter to the skillet and repeat as described above.
Arrange each croissant on a warm plate, garnish with fresh raspberries, a sprig of mint and a dusting of confectioner's sugar. Serve with warm maple syrup.
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