A great twist on a classic breakfast favourite!
In the French toast versus pancakes debate, I am always on team French toast. There’s something so appealing to me about the eggy, soft inside and the crispy outside. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still a big fan of pancakes (and waffles, too) but my preferred breakfast vehicle for maple syrup is definitely French toast. Coating the egg-dipped slices in cornflake crumbs prior to cooking is a true game changer; it adds a layer of crunchiness and flavour that completely enhances the French toast experience. A few tips about this recipe: be sure to use a bread (regular or gluten-free) that’s not too dense so that the egg mixture can soak in well. As for the cornflakes, you can buy them already crushed or take your favourite corn-based cereal, put it in a bag and crush it with a rolling pin. If you need a gluten-free option, be sure to check the cereal label carefully. Corn Chex are a great option as are several varieties of flakes. Last but not least, take the time to preheat the oven to keep the French toast warm while you cook the whole batch, so that the crispy outside stays crispy. I’m thinking of trying graham cracker crumbs next time for another flavourful, crispy twist!
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) table cream (18%), or light cream or milk
- 2 teaspoons (10 mL) vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) ground cinnamon
- 2 cups (500 mL) corn flake crumbs
- 6 slices regular or gluten-free bread
- Butter, for frying
- Fresh fruit and maple syrup, to garnish
- Place a wire rack over a baking tray and preheat the oven to 325F.
- Crack eggs into a broad, shallow bowl. Whisk thoroughly then add cream, vanilla and cinnamon and whisk again. If you don’t like whisking, you can combine these ingredients in a blender instead, then transfer to a bowl.
- Place cornflake crumbs in a second broad, shallow bowl.
- Heat a broad skillet over medium heat but do not add the butter yet.
- Dip one piece of bread in the egg and cream mixture; let it sit for about 30 seconds then flip it and let sit for 30 seconds more.
- While bread is sitting in cream mixture, add a tablespoon (15 mL) of butter to the hot frying pan.
- Transfer the dipped bread to the dish of cornflake crumbs. Press gently on the top then flip and press again. Both sides should be thoroughly and evenly coated with crumbs.
- Transfer the dipped and crumbed bread to the hot frying pan and repeat with one or two more bread slices (depending upon how many pieces you can fit in your frying pan, with room to flip them.
- Cook the first side of the bread for 3 – 5 minutes, until golden brown. As you lift each piece up out of the pan, and add a bit more butter to the empty space in the pan before you flip and return the French toast to the pan. Cook 3 – 5 minutes more until golden then transfer cooked pieces to the wire rack covered tray and place in the hot oven.
- Repeat with remaining slices of bread. Serve hot with maple syrup and fresh fruit.
Serves 2 – 3; recipe can easily be multiplied.