Do you ever wake up in the morning and think to yourself, “What I really need to get this day started right is some highly refined carbs coated in sugar and fat!” If so, look no further, I have the perfect French toast recipe for you!
Making French toast is a pretty simple process that we’ve likely been enjoying for years. However, this meal can quickly be elevated from your mom’s basic fare with a few simple tips.
First, bread matters. Using sweeter bread such as Challah bread is the easiest way to improve upon your French toast recipe. Most people use a simple white bread for French toast; this creates a largely flavorless palette that lends nothing to the enjoyment of the meal other than serving as the delivery agent for its syrupy sweet coating. If you live in the Fox Valley, Challah bread appears to be nearly impossible to come by. However, Manderfield’s Bakery sells a “Buttercrust” which is a great substitute. I also highly recommend the cinnamon raisin bread from Panera or Chunky Cinnamon Bread from Festival Food's bakery.
I recommend having your baker slice the bread thick if possible. Texas toast style cuts are ideal for French toast as they provide a fluffier pillow of sweetness entering your mouth rather than a saturated mush of syrup.
Finally, the simplest trick: Use stale bread. Stale bread is a bit hardier so it will absorb more custard (flavor!) and not get soggy. Fresh bread will be softer and more easily fall apart. If you are making French toast, let it sit out overnight before you make it in the morning. When you see how hard and stale it is the next morning you may think you have ruined it, but do not despair. It will turn out perfect!
Basic French Toast Recipe
You can make the custard in advance and let it refrigerate if you want to save time in the morning.
1 cup Milk
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
2 tbsp Brown Sugar (up to 2 tbsp of warmed Honey can be substituted)
Pinch of Salt
Challah or other sweet bread
Powdered Sugar (optional)
Mix the first six ingredients to form the liquid custard. (I like to reserve a little cinnamon and brown sugar to sprinkle on the toast slices just prior to grilling as well.)
Dip the stale bread slices in the custard to ensure each piece is evenly coated, allowing the excess liquid to drip off. Place each slice on a buttered and heated griddle set to medium heat. Flip once to ensure both sides nicely brown.
Place finished French toast on a plate, topping with butter and generous pouring of Maple syrup. Dusting lightly with powdered sugar is optional.
Improve Upon a Basic French Toast Recipe
- 3 Eggs
- 1 cup Milk
- 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1/4 tsp Cinnamon
- 2 tbsp Brown Sugar up to 2 tbsp of warmed Honey can be substituted
- Pinch of Salt
- Stale Challah bread or other sweet bread. Thick cut if possible
- Maple Syrup
- Mix the first six ingredients to form the liquid custard. (I like to reserve a little cinnamon and brown sugar to sprinkle on the toast slices just prior to grilling as well.)
- Dip the stale bread slices in the custard to ensure each piece is evenly coated, allowing the excess liquid to drip off.
- Butter griddle set to medium heat and sprinkle additional brown sugar and cinnamon on griddle.
- Add french toast to griddle.
- Sprinkle additional brown sugar and cinnamon on face up side of bread as well.
- Flip once to ensure both sides nicely brown.
- Place finished French toast on a plate, topping with butter and generous pouring of Maple syrup.
- Dust lightly with powdered sugar if desired.