The first time I really had French toast was when I went to Burger King as a kid. BK had French toast sticks that were dipped in syrup. It was basically cinnamon bread dipped in syrup, but for a 10-year old, it was amazing. I think the mature, adult Dark Chocolate Alchemist can do much better. In tribute to maturing, I bring you one of the best French toast recipes in existence.
Most people would be surprised to learn that French toast is a bread soaked custard. Technically, it is the crème brulee of breakfast foods. To facilitate the bread’s ability to absorb the custard, it is best to use day old bread or to leave bread on the counter to dry out overnight. If leaving the bread out at night, it is a good idea to make the custard at night to allow the custard ingredients to mellow and smooth together.
Custards use milk, cream, or half-and-half to provide creaminess and richness. The most important difference between these products, in custard making, is the fat content. Knowing that milk is 3.5% milk fat, heavy cream is 36% milk fat, and half-and-half is 10.5% milk fat allows the custard maker to never be limited to following a recipe’s choice of dairy.
For instance, if a recipe calls for one cup of half-and-half and I only have milk and cream, what do I do? I would combine ¼ cup of heavy cream with ¾ cups of whole milk. Why? Because to get to 10.5% milk fat in 1 cup, ¼ cup of heavy cream would provide 9% milk fat and the whole milk would provide 2.63% milk fat. This results in a product that is 11.6% milk fat. Is it exactly the milk fat percent of half-and-half? No. But it is very close and the little bit of extra milk fat provides even more creaminess.
Active Time: 30 minutes
Inactive Time: Overnight
¼ cup of cream
¾ cup of whole milk
2 tbs of sugar (or honey)
- Leave bread on counter overnight to dry out.
- Custard: Combine cream, milk, eggs, sugar, and cinnamon in a bowl and whisk.
- Strain the custard then place in a covered container overnight.
- Heat buttered skillet over medium high heat. Also preheat oven to 325°F.
- Remove custard from refrigerator and pour in pie dish or other container big enough to dip bread.
- Soak the bread in custard for 30 seconds on each side.
- Sit the bread on a rack to rest for 2 minutes. And proceed to soak the rest of bread.
- Cook soaked bread on skillet until outside is browned.
- Once all bread is browned, place on a baking sheet and cook for 5 minutes.
- When one minute is left on timer, add chocolate chips to top of French toast to melt chocolate.
- Serve with syrup.
Makes 5-8 servings