Wednesday, April 9, 2014

What's For Dinner Wednesday:

French Toast with Homemade Buttermilk Syrup



French toast existed long before France was established as a country. The exact origins of French Toast are unknown, but it’s unsurprising that humans developed the recipe quickly, given that it is traditionally made out of stale bread. Bread has been a staple of most cultures since food preparation first began. Coupling this with a rejection of food wastage (which is really only something that is acceptable in modern society), it’s unsurprising that man had to find a way to make stale bread palatable.
The earliest reference to doing this dates back to 4th century Rome, in a cookbook attributed to Apicius. This style of toast was called Pan Dulcis. The Romans would take the bread and soak it in a milk and egg mixture, and then cook it, typically frying it in oil or butter.
This practice of cooking stale bread became common throughout Europe in the Middle Ages. In fact, the name for French Toast in France is “pain perdu”, which literally means “lost bread”. There are some that still insist that French Toast  originated in France, however, it’s interesting to note that before the French called it “pain perdu”, they called it “pain a la Romaine” (Roman bread).
So why is this clever concoction attributed to the French? One theory is that it’s reminiscent of French cooking before the invention of proper refrigeration. It’s said that many of their rich, heavy and creamy sauces were created to hide the fact that the meat or fish in the dish was, or was very nearly off.

Pst!  Come a little closer...a little closer....this is our favorite french toast recipe. I hope you like it!

BUTTERY FRENCH TOAST WITH CINNAMON, NUTMEG AND VANILLA

Ingredients:

1 loaf texas toast bread
4 eggs 
1 1/2 C heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp cinnamon* (or more if desired, my husband is not a fan of cinnamon so I try and tone it down)
1/4 tsp nutmeg*
1 TBS vanilla extract

* you may need to add more spices to egg mixture halfway through your cooking because they float to the top and stick to the bread.

Butter, lots of butter, cut into 1 TBS pats (like 1 to 2 sticks of butter)

Directions:

In large, high sided skillet melt 2-3 TBS of butter on Medium heat being careful not to burn butter.

Meanwhile, in large bowl whip together eggs, cream, spices and vanilla.

Using tongs, dip bread into egg mixture and place in butter pan.  Continue adding dipped bread until pan is full.  Cook on Medium heat until browned on one side, flip over and continue cooking until done in the middle.  Add more butter if needed to keep bread from sticking.

Remove from pan and keep warm on plate tented with foil or in an oven set on warm.

Repeat process until you have cooked all the french toast, adding more spices if needed halfway through the process (you will notice the specs of spices will dwindle as you batter your french toast).

To serve, top with warm HOMEMADE BUTTERMILK SYRUP!  C'est si bon!



Buttermilk Syrup


ingredients:

1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

directions:

1. Combine butter, sugar, and buttermilk in a large saucepan. Heat over medium heat and whisk together until sugar dissolves. When butter mixture starts to boil, carefully whisk in the baking soda and vanilla. The mixture will bubble up, so make sure you use a large saucepan. Serve with French toast.

{QUOTES TO COOK BY}

“If you're afraid of butter, use cream.” 


“How can a nation be called great if its bread tastes like kleenex?” 
― Julia Child

“You are the butter to my bread,and the breath to my life” 
― Julia Child


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