Is there anything better than fluffy French toast? It’s browned on the outside and tender inside. When you make the perfect batter and cook it to perfection for a great breakfast, lunch or dinner. This simple recipe takes less than 30 minutes from start to completion.
History of French Toast
Most people assume that the birth of French toast occurred in France, but that’s not true. Long before it received that name, it was part of the cuisine in the Roman Empire. In fact, the first time it was called French toast was in the 17th-century by the English. Then, the early settlers brought it with them to America.
Surprisingly, the dish is referred to as pain perdu in France, which translates “lost bread.” This name came from the fact that people used day-old bread that would have otherwise been thrown away.
Back in the United States, it’s common to serve French toast with maple syrup, butter or powdered sugar. It’s also common to top it with fresh fruit.
Unique Characteristics of French Toast
Making French toast doesn’t take a lot of work. The simple ingredients include beaten eggs, cinnamon, milk, vanilla and bread. After frying the egg-coated bread in a pan, the dish is complete. That’s why it’s a popular staple for American breakfasts.
It’s often recommended to slice the bread the night before cooking. This allows it to dry out overnight and keeps it from getting too soggy from the egg mixture.
French Toast Recipe
Prep: 20 min
Cook: 10 min
Yield: 4 servings
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 slices challah, brioche, or white bread
- 1/2 cup maple syrup, warmed
In a small bowl, combine cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugar and set aside briefly.
In a 10-inch or 12-inch skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk together cinnamon mixture, eggs, milk, and vanilla and pour into a shallow container such as a pie plate. Dip bread in egg mixture. Fry slices until golden brown, then flip to cook the other side. Serve with syrup.
Food Network also published a video showing how to make French toast.
There’s also a recipe for beginners with some practical tips.
The main consideration to give for your French toast recipe is the bread you use. Ideally, it should be old and not fresh. This gives it the texture you want and helps it to hold up in the egg mixture. We recommend using an Italian or French loaf which is naturally crusty and hard. Some people prefer to use sourdough bread, which is fine as well. In the Jewish communities, leftover challah bread is used from the Sabbath dinner to create breakfast on Sunday.
You also want to make sure you have thick slices, because thin slices simply won’t do.
On to the toppings, you can add whatever you want. Some popular toppings include powder sugar, jelly, maple syrup, honey, applesauce, peanut butter, whipped cream, nuts, fruit, yogurt or ice cream.
If you prefer a savory meal, make French toast with cheese, bacon, gravy or ketchup instead. This would even work well as a hearty dinner.
If you desire some extra zing, there’s an unconventional variation you might enjoy. Include a little orange zest and Triple Sec orange liqueur to the batter. This makes for a fantastic Sunday brunch recipe.
Enjoy the Meal
Treat you and the family to a classic breakfast sophisticated with some modern variations. It’s sure to become a favorite around the table and help you create new memories.