Saturday, March 22, 2008

My favorite French toast

French toast may just be my all-time favorite breakfast food, which is probably why I make the recipe below so often. I know French toast recipes in general are pretty fail-safe, but this one is especially so--it always turns out wonderfully, and it's a snap to make as well.

I usually top it with a pat of butter and some maple syrup, but a homemade berry sauce (and a good dousing of powdered sugar) sounds like a good alternative, doesn't it?

1 loaf challah or other rich, eggy bread
6 large eggs
1 1/2 cups vanilla-flavored soy milk ("regular" milk works too, obviously)
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Powdered sugar (optional)
Maple syrup

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.

Slice bread crosswise into 3/4-inch thick round slices.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until well blended. Add the milk, sugar, zest, vanilla and cinnamon and whisk well.

Melt 1 tablespoon of butter on a large nonstick griddle over medium heat. Dip 3 slices of bread into the custard, turning to allow both sides to absorb the custard. Grill the soaked bread slices until they are golden brown and firm to the touch, about 4 minutes per side.

Transfer the French toast to a baking sheet and keep them warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining butter, bread slices and custard.

Transfer the French toast to plates. Lightly dust with the powdered sugar, if that's your thing. Drizzle syrup over and around the French toast and serve immediately.