My Uruguayan husband has a weakness for pan dulce, or sweet bread.
Here in the U.S., where we have a deep Italian influence, we call it panettone, a delicious yeasty bread punctuated with dried fruits like currants or raisins
People, I’m sure you’ve figured this out, but panettone makes the best French toast ever. Ever.
Typically Lauro brings a big round loaf home, and we’ll have it on hand to eat and eat and eat, slice by delicious slice.
Before it’s devoured inch by inch, I wrench away a few slices for French toast. I use my biggest serrated bread knife to slice the big round loaf down the center. Then I turn it face down and I cut half-inch slices from the center of the loaf, leaving the smaller edges for continued snacking.
Incidentally, both the French toast and the snacking pieces are great with my cinnamon sugar butter.
Panettone French toast
Serves four to six
8 1/2-inch slices panettone or other sweet bread
1/2 cup heavy cream or half-and-half
Vegetable oil for griddling
Preheat oven to 250 degrees and put an oven-proof platter on the center rack. Preheat a skillet or griddle over medium heat – a good pre-heat on cast iron will give you great French toast every time. When a drop of water dances on the surface, it’s ready. Brush it with oil when ready to griddle.
Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs and cream in a shallow bowl. Dip the bread into the egg mixture and turn to coat. Place on the griddle and cook until your desired level of golden, about three minutes depending on your equipment. Turn to cook the other side. Remove and transfer to the platter in the oven. Repeat with remaining slices. Serve with embellishments of your choice.
Set out an array of embellishments and let everyone top their own French toast:
- Cinnamon sugar butter
- Plain yogurt with orange zest and orange-flavored liqueur
- Maple syrup
- Powdered sugar
- Jam, thinned to sauce consistency with a little water or liqueur
Last year I served Maria Speck’s saffron waffles. What will you be making?
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