French Toast

French ToastAnother quick post.  French Toast.

And not just any French Toast, but the most awesome French Toast.

Growing up, in my home what we got, which was good, was just beaten eggs with bread dipped into it and cooked on a griddle.  Sometimes, the bread was broken into chunks and just stirred with the beaten eggs, then all at once was put on the griddle and cooked, occasionally stirred or turned to get it all cooked.  The issue with *that* was that the eggs didn’t coat all the bread and some of the thicker chunks didn’t get fully cooked in the middle.  Personally, I love runny eggs, especially as a French Omelette, although admittedly with a few less herbs than Julia uses.  But when soaked with maple syrup, I find it to be cloyingly sweet and a little gross.  Of course, I also do not like maple syrup on scrambled eggs, or even McGriddle sandwiches.  Yuck.  My brother disagrees with me, and he adored the chumps of french-toast-like-stuff we ate as kids.

I am more of a purest.  I believe that you should make the French Toast in toast shapes, though I do add more than just eggs.  I actually tried a few different recipes (few dozen?), and even tried winging it a bunch and just put whatever looked good into the bowl and mixed it up.  It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t awesome, either.  We actually now go to the Joy of Cooking, that wonderful classic of American cooking.  If you don’t have it, you should go get it.

Also?  it is good with normal sandwich bread, but to reach awesome levels of goodness, you need a thicker bread, and it is even better if that bread is a little stale or dried out.  We lay out the bread on a rack for a half hour or so before putting it in the custard, if we can at all stir up the patience for it.  And for those super special occasions, we get a big pack of Croissants, cut in half length-wise, and use those.  Awesomocity at it’s finest!

Really simple, too.  Dump all the ingredients into a bowl, whisk them (with a fork or a balloon whisk), and dip the bread into them until well coated.  Put it on a 325-350 degree griddle, flip them when the first side is golden brown, remove when the second side is golden brown.  Serve with butter or syrup.

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Oh, and don’t forget Croissants!

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French Toast
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10 slices
Best French Toast, ever!
  • ½ Cup heavy cream (or half and half, or whole milk)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • 8-10 slices of bread (more or less depending on the type of bread used)
  1. Preheat griddle or pan to between 325-350 degrees (when drops of water dance and evaporate rather than just sitting there)
  2. Put all the ingredients, other than the bread, into a bowl and whisk it together.
  3. Dip slices of bread into the custard and onto the griddle. Turn when golden brown, remove when second side is golden brown.
  4. Serve with butter and maple syrup, or powdered sugar.


French Crepes

French CrepesHave you ever had the desire to show off at the end of a meal, and create a simple but amazing dish that will get everyone to Ooh and Ah?  My friends, I present for your consideration, French Crepes!’

(Please note, these are dessert crepes, so are slightly sweeter than the kind you would make for the main meal.  Those are awesome as well, but for a different day.)

French Crepes are easy to make (with only a little practice), very few ingredients (all of which are common), and will delight and inspire your guests.  I invite the guests to join me in the kitchen, and sit around the island talking while I make them, switching between two pans on the stove-top to get them done a little faster.  The guests then fill them with an assortment of fillings, based on what i liked that day.  Fresh fruits, like strawberries and blueberries, chocolate spread (I prefer Justin’s Hazelnut Butter over Nutella), whipped cream, caramel syrup, nuts, and almost all Sundae Toppings are always a hit.

If there is a trick to this, and I am not saying there is, it would be to figure out the heat setting on your stove to cook them to golden brown without cooking them too quickly, so you have time to swirl them around the pan before they set.  Say, start with medium, and let the pan get warm for a couple of minutes before you start.  Oh, and a good non-stick pan is a major help.  Oh, and make the batter the night before you want to cook them so the it can rest, or at least a few hours before.

Don;t let any of that intimidate you.  The batter is cheap, mostly flour and butter, so make twice what you want and play with it.  It really is worth doing.

Let’s bring on the photos!

Make the batter beforehand, in a blender.  It beats hand whisking every time (at least for crepes).


When ready, I use a measuring cup to get the right amount for the pan.  I use 1/3 cup for a 10″ pan.  Once the pan is good and hot, i wipe it down with a little butter on a paper towel, not a lot, just a hint of it.  Then pour in the measures batter all at once, and start swirling the pan to make a nice thin coating across the entire bottom of the pan.

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Let that cook over the heat for a little bit, may 30-60 seconds, then check under the edge with a spatula.  You are looking for a nice, golden brown, and a little shake on the pan should have the crepe move loosely.

French Crepes

When it looks good, flip it over.  My inner self always wants to do a large flourish of the pan to flip it, but that’s just me wanting to show off.  It is much easier to use the spatula and kind of pick it up in the middle and unfold it on it’s other side.  It also ends up with a lot less broken, lost, or messed up crepes.

French Crepes

The second side needs less time than the first side, and won’t get all golden brown, but it will set and get some brown spots, then slide it out of the pan and onto a waiting plate.  Cover the plate with a clean dish towel, or right onto a guests plate, but be careful to not burn them with the pan.

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And that’s it!  add some filling, less is often more so don’t overfill them, and roll them up.

Your guests will thank you.  Several times.


Recipe is taken from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by the wonderful Julia Childs.  If you don’t have it, go buy it.  Now.  I’ll wait.  It’s simple instructions and detailed recipes will make you a better cook, and the book is truly amazing.

French Crepes
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10-12 6" crepes
As dessert crepes, they are slightly sweeter than the savory kind, and can be wrapped around many things for a sublime after dinner treat. Best when the batter gets to rest for 2-24 hours. Try to make the night before you want them.
  • ¾ cup milk
  • ¾ cup cold water
  • 3 egg yokes
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • 5 tablespoons melted butter
  1. Put all the ingredients into the blender in the order they are listed. Cover and blend at top speed for one minute. Scrape down the sides and blend again for a few seconds. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or better overnight.
  2. heat a non-stick pan over medium heat for a few minutes until hot. Wipe with a very small amount of butter. Pour in about ⅓ cup of batter and slowly swirl around until the bottom of the pan is covered. Cook for 30 seconds to a minute, until golden brown, then flip over (using spatula, fingers, or wrist flip of the pan. Be careful to not burn yourself.) 30 seconds on the second side, and remove from pan.
  3. Repeat until all batter is used.