Sunday, January 30, 2011
EASY French Toast to Die For
Thank you Mark Bittman for the best basic French bread recipe. I have built upon it by adding oats, flax meal, wheat germ, and topping the toast with fresh peaches and cashews. Ok, so maybe we had to defrost the peaches--not much to work with in January, but still....very, very good. I think almost Mother's Day/Father's Day-worthy. Bittman recommends using challah bread (especially instead of white Wonder bread....), but since it's so hard to find (and I haven't tried making that yet), we used an everyday white bread I recently made. I will post on that recipe soon (but frankly, getting a little worried my audience is sick of the bread posts by now). But,you can use any bread you have on hand--it's an especially great use for bread that may be going stale.
Anyway, I'm sharing Bittman's recipe with you because 1) Every family needs a french toast recipe as part of breakfast repertoire and 2) Because it's good. I hope you will love this french toast as much as our family does. By the way, despite its name, French toast is NOT from France. Apparently, there is mention of the dish from the 4th or 5th centuries in Rome. And a similar dish was very popular in the middle ages. These days, the English call it 'Eggy Bread.'
Adapted from How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman
You can make this dish eggier by adding less milk. If you like mushy French toast--you may need more batter as you will want to soak your bread in the batter more so than 'dip' it. If you like your French toast on the crispy side, add 1/2 cup flour to the batter. You can also make it by crispy by dredging the battered toast in sweetened bread crumbs or crushed cornflakes (my personal favorite).
Makes 4 servings
1 cup milk
Dash of salt
1 Tbsp. sugar (optional-I always skip this because adding syrup is sweet enough)
1 tsp. vanilla extract and/or ground cinnamon (I like to add them both)
Butter or canola oil (as needed)
My add-ins--BESIDES the 1/2 cup of flour which makes it crispy--our favorite:
1/2 cup oatmeal
1 Tbsp. wheat germ
1 tsp. ground flax meal
Preheat a large griddle or skillet over medium-low heat while you prepare the liquid mixture.
Beat the eggs lightly in a broad bowl and stir in the milk, salt, and optional ingredients (if you are using any of them).
Add approximately 1 tsp. of butter or oil to the griddle or skillet and when it is hot, dip each slice of bread into the batter and turn it over to get both sides covered. Then place the toast on the griddle adnd cook until nicely browned on each side, turning as necessary (you may find that you can raise the heat a bit). Serve, or hold in a 200 degree F oven for up to 30 minutes.
Serve with warm maple syrup and fruit/nuts. We tried them with cashew pieces and fresh peaches, but you can try almond butter and applesauce or berries and cream, etc. There are many possibilities.