bacon french toast
When I was a kid I hated french toast—even the smell would make me run and hide. I was also the kind of picky kid who loved waffles but hated pancakes. My poor mother. I’m happy to say that times have changed and I’ve embraced all breakfast foods, especially french toast.
Last weekend, after picking up some amazing smoked bacon and challah bread at the farmers’ market, I had a flash of brilliance. Why not combine two of my favorite breakfast foods, bacon and french toast? Especially since I already slather my bacon with syrup anyways, I mean, it almost seems like I’d be saving myself time. I’m happy to say I did it and there’s a possibility that even my 8-year old self would have loved this.
There are two key ingredients in this recipe that really take it above and beyond your run of the mill french toast. First, the bread. Challah, a slightly sweet eggy bread similar to brioche, makes the best french toast—and if you have stale challah, even better. It’s light, sweet dough soaks in the goodness from the batter while still remaining light and fluffy. If you can get it, use it.
The second key ingredient is bacon, preferably smoked. The subtle smoky flavor adds depth and contrast to the sweetness of the bread and syrup. Of course regular bacon will do to.
Tthere’s one other secret to this recipe that kind of takes it over the top. Once it was cooked, I carefully removed the bacon with a slotted spoon and poured half the bacon fat in a cup. Do you see where I’m going with this? Instead of using butter to get that crispy outside, I used the same pan I cooked the bacon in to make the french toast, so the bread soaks up even more of that bacony goodness. Yeah, I went there and it was awesome.
If you’re looking for a way to mix things up in the morning, I promise you, this will not disappoint. It may even convert a french toast hater into a lover.
bacon french toast
makes 2 servings (4 slices)
|3 eggs2 Tablespoons heavy cream
2 strips of smoked bacon, diced (regular bacon will also work)
4 slices challah bread, cut into 1-inch slices
maple syrup, to serve
|1. Cook the bacon in a large frying pan over medium heat, about 2 minutes on each side or until slightly crisp. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon and pour half the fat in a cup (we’ll use this for the second batch). Let the bacon cool on paper towel.
2. Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs and heavy cream in a sided-baking pan or tupperware dish. Lay two slices of the bread in the mixture, let sit for about 5 seconds, then flip and let the other side soak.
3. Heat the pan over medium heat and carefully lay the two slices in the bacon fat. As the face-down side is cooking, sprinkle 1/4 of the bacon on top of each slice of bread, then gently press it down with the spatula. After about 2 minutes, or when the bottom side is golden, flip slices and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Repeat with the remaining two slices (remember to add the reserved bacon fat).
4. Serve bacon side up and drizzled with syrup. Enjoy!