This recipe is a favorite of mine and I have been making variations of it for years. Use whatever summer fruit is best at your farmers’ market- peaches, plums, apricots. You can even throw in a few handfuls of berries. This is a great way to use up old bread, so don’t get caught up in the size or number of slices in the recipe, just use that as a guideline. You just want enough bread to make 2 layers and you can cut or tear it to fit in the dish, if needed.
- Whipped cream, for serving
- For the Fruit Layer
- 1 1/4 pounds ripe peaches, sliced 1/4-inch thick (3 or 4 large)
- 1 1/2 pounds ripe plums, sliced 1/4-inch thick (4 or 5 medium)
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 3/4 cup sugar
- For the Bread Layer
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the baking dish
- 6 (1/2-inch thick) sliced day-old country bread (about 5-by-4 inches)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- For the Topping
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- Kosher salt
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. For the fruit layer, toss the peaches and plums in a large bowl with the lemon zest, juice, and sugar.
Butter an 8-by-10-inch baking dish. Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add half of the bread slices. Brown and crisp on one side, turn and brown the second side, about 2 minutes per side. Remove to a plate. Repeat with the remaining butter and bread. While the bread is still hot, sprinkle the tops with the sugar.
For the topping, combine the granulated sugar, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Scatter in the butter pieces and rub the butter into the flour mixture with your fingertips until the mixture resembles small cornflakes. Add the chopped walnuts and toss.
Layer half of the bread in the bottom of the baking dish, breaking the slices to fit, if needed. Spoon half of the fruit layer over top. Add second layer of bread slices and press down slightly. Top with the rest of the fruit and juices. Sprinkle the topping over all.
Set the baking dish on a sheet pan and bake on the middle rack of the oven until the juices are bubbling and the topping is golden brown, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.
Serve warm, topped with whipped cream.