I made breakfast for dinner last night: French Toast with a side of bacon. I thought the French Toast fell flat. I whisked eight eggs, added salt, nutmeg and a conservative dash of whole milk for the batter. Dipped 12 slices of Italian Bread (and used all the batter) and pan fried the bread. Then served the toast with Kerrygold butter and a Grade A Maple Syrup. But the meal was blah–only saved by the bacon.
I don’t make french toast often but when I do, I mix vanilla in with the eggs. Got the tip from a friend many years ago. I do, however, make waffles often and keep them in the freezer for my kids and I add vanilla to that batter too.
I do roughly 4 eggs to a rough cup of milk, with a couple glugs of half and half. I also add cinnamon, fresh grated nutmeg, vanilla and a tablespoon or so of sugar to help it caramelize. Use challah, dip and soak for a few seconds, then cook in butter. This makes about 5-6 slices of French toast.
For about 2-3 slices of thick french toast, I usually use about 2-3 eggs and 1-1.5 cups of milk. I don’t add salt to my mixture, but I will usually mix in some vanilla and cinnamon, or if I’m feeling different, some cardamom.
I really like to let the bread soak up the solution to get the flavor of the spices in there.
After a trip to France, where our barge Chef used left over baguette for french toast, we almost always grab an old baguette from the freezer for french toast. There is just two of us and I don’t really follow a recipe, but I think I usually to two eggs, about a cup of milk (or some nut milk product depending on what’s on hand), a TBS of sugar, lots of vanilla (I have a small jar of bourbon that sits full of old vanilla beans so sometimes I use bourbon in the mix), and lots of cinnamon. Long soak, flip each piece once, then onto a hot griddle.
I didn’t read all the responses so if this has been mentioned already my apologies. I’ll share with you my secret but don’t tell everyone, I’ve been the french toast king of my sons buddies for years…if word of my secret recipe gets out that’s it, I’ll be toppled.
Eggs, vinilla, milk or cream if you have on hand, nutmeg and brown sugar / cinnamon combination. I buy it premixed however you could just “wing” it, brown sugar AND cinnamon in the mix. Also I’ll buy extra thick sliced bread…another “treat” is to use the pepperidge farm raisin or cinnamon swirl bread. I prefer the raisin as the cinnomon swirl can be a bit much, unless you really like cinnamon.
Quick related story. When I was in high school we would stay over a a fellow team mate from footballs house. We would generally crash in his yard in a tent, have a “camp out”. When his father would know we were staying over he would buy 3-4 loaves of bread, and every morning he would be waiting in the kitchen for us to wake up and he would sit us at the kitchen table, tell us to recant our night before and he would revel in our stories while cooking us french toast.
My friends father recently passed away, and I told this story to my friend and told him I had such fond memories of his father doing this for us, when my son was in high school, and his football buddies would stay over I would buy 3-4 loaves of bread…and wait in the kitchen for them to wake up. I would have juices (for their hangovers) out and I would prod them to tell me the stories of their previous nights adventures, while I joyfully cook them french toast for breakfast.
Friendly reminder to all of us, you never know how something that might seem so simple to you, like cooking breakfast, could actually make a life long impression on those around us. I’m so thankful for those memories and experiences and equally thankful I was able to hopefully create similar fond memories for my son and his friend.
French Toast… teaching us what life is all about!
I can’t recall which cooking shows they were, but when they made FT they stressed that a long soak is a no-no. So’s too short a dip. You want the bread moist throughout but not mushy. I don’t measure but I think I probably use 4oz milk per egg, which is what the custard chapter of Ruhlman’s “Ratio” calls for - 2:1 dairy: egg for most custards.
Without looking for my exact recipe, I’m guessing at the quantities:
1 loaf Italian bread cur into 1" slices, 3/4 cup milk, 5 eggs, 1/2 cup orange juice, 1/3 cup Grand Marnier, 1/4 cup sugar, dash of salt , a little vanilla, some orange zest if you have an orange.
Soak overnight (I use a lasagna pan).
Bake in a 475° oven for 7 minutes, flip, 5 minutes more. No butter or syrup necessary.
Sorry, this obviously won’t work for spur of the moment.
The bread is kinda critical. I think thicker and more dense bread works best , a proper sourdough is what my dad used most sunday mornings and is still a favorite. The italian may have been to fluffy and airy so after french toast-ified it’s too mooshy squooshy
Did you use butter in the pan to cook it? That helps a lot, just be patient and use med low ish heat