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Pecan or Strawberry Stuffed French Toast

4 oz. cream cheese
2 tbsp. sugar
10 medium strawberries
1 loaf day-old French bread, unsliced
3 eggs
1/4 c. water, milk, or orange juice
Butter-flavored shortening
Powder sugar (if desired)

Blend the cream cheese, strawberries, and 1 tablespoon sugar. Slice bread in about 1½ inch slices. Then slice a pocket in the center of each. Spread about a tablespoon of cheese mixture in each pocket. Mix eggs, water (or milk or orange juice) and the other tablespoon of sugar. Dip the bread and let it soak in the mixture for a few minutes. Fry on a griddle or in a frying pan in a little butter-flavored shortening until both sides are golden brown. Sprinkle with powder sugar. Serve with maple syrup or more strawberries.

Makes 4 servings.