I love the opportunity to sleep in late and take things slow on a Saturday morning, having a leisurely breakfast so close to lunch time that it's almost too late to even call it brunch. And if you've seen some of my previous French toast offerings (here, here and here), then you will be in no doubt that French toast is indeed one of my favourite breakfast/brunch treats.
My weekend mornings usually start with getting up around 10.00 am, making a cup of tea, and then taking tea and a stack of cookbooks back to bed (ok, I know that right now every single one of you out there with children is hating me - what can I say?!). So this morning I was leafing through Nigel Slater's Tender Vol. II, looking for a little inspiration for this weeks blog post. Our theme at I Heart Cooking Clubs this week is Off The Spice Rack, and I was thinking along the lines of something nice and spicy for dinner.
And then I stumbled across Nigel's recipe for "Early autumn apples on hot toast". By this stage it was late morning, and with the tummy rumbling a little my thoughts made the leap from hot buttered toast to... you guessed it, French toast.
This could not be simpler for a quick brekkie treat. Day old brioche is soaked in an eggy bath while sliced apples are sauteed gently in butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon, until tender and caramelised, then spooned over the French toast. To be honest, I never would have thought of apples on toast (French or otherwise), but it was a combination that really worked, and the hot, sweet, buttery apples made a great wintery alternative to berries. Definitely a dish I will be making again.
Spiced Apple French Toast Recipe
Adapted only slightly from a recipe by Nigel Slater
from Tender Vol. II
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe
2x slices day-old brioche
(or bread of your choice - a spiced fruit & nut bread would be a good choice)
2x free-range eggs
1/4 cup milk
slosh of vanilla extract
butter for frying
50g (2oz) butter
2x heaped tablespoons soft brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
generous handful of raisins
In a wide shallow dish, mix together the lightly beaten eggs, milk and vanilla extract. Add the sliced bread to the "egg bath", and leave to soak while you prepare the apples. Turn bread over about half way through.
Melt the 50g (2oz) of butter in a shallow frying pan set over medium heat. As soon as the butter starts to sizzle, add the brown sugar and cinnamon, and allow to bubble away for a minute or so, stirring constantly. Add the apples, and saute for a couple of minutes, stirring from time to time. Add the raisins to the pan, and continue to cook for another 5 minutes or so, or until the apples are tender but not collapsing. Remove from pan and set aside.
Return pan to the heat, and add another generous knob of butter to the pan. Once the butter is sizzling, add the bread to the pan. Cook until richly golden on one side, then flip over and repeat on the other side.
Remove the French toast to a serving platter, and spoon the warm, caramelised apples and raisins over the top. Serve immediately. It's not shown in these photos, but a nice dollop of Greek-style yoghurt, with a bit of cinnamon swirled through it made a nice accompaniment.
If you would like to get to know Nigel Slater a little better, and to see what everyone else has cooked up this week, then do go and visit my friends at I Heart Cooking Clubs and check out the links ...
... or check out Tender, Vol. II and Nigel's many other great titles available from Amazon USA, Amazon UK, or Fishpond NZ.
I'll also be sharing this post this week at See Ya In the Gumbo hosted by the delightful Michelle at Ms. enPlace, at Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads, at Foodie Fridays hosted by Designs by Gollum, and at Cook Your Books hosted by the lovely Joyce at Kitchen Flavours.