Pain Perdu (French Toast) + Brioche Bread

This is going to be one of the heaviest recipes featured here, there’s going to be lots of sugar, butter & cream, and that usually results in a very, very high-calorie count. But don’t be afraid, we are going to do this properly, from scratch.

First, the bread. Yes, you can just use normal sandwich bread, but those bread are bland & textureless, so, instead of that, we are going to use Brioche. It’s light and slightly puffy with a dark, golden, and flaky crust, which makes it perfect for this recipe, a bread that’s not too chewy, but can still hold its shape. I know that Brioche is often made with fruit or chocolate chip and served on its own, or served as a base for canapés, or soak it in syrup, and bake into a Bostock (which some claims to be better than French toast and they have a point), but trust me on this one, the result is worth the effort.

You’ll need these for the Brioche bread:

  • 500g flour
  • 3 eggs (2 eggs for bread & 1 egg for the egg wash)
  • 50g sugar
  • 5g salt
  • 10g dry active yeast
  • 100g butter
  • 200mL milk

How to make this:

  1. Sift the flour into a large bowl, stir in the sugar & salt, then cut the butter into small cubes & rub them into the flour, this will create the flaky crust on the outside
  2. In another bowl, whisk together the 2 eggs, room temp milk, and yeast, then gradually add the liquid into the dry mixture, about 1/4 at a time. Then place the dough on a well-floured surface and knead the dough until it’s smooth, which takes about 5 to 7 min
  3. Place the dough in a sealed container and let it proof for about 2 hours or until it doubles in size, then punch it down, cut it into 3 equal portions, stretch them out and braid, and place it into a loaf tray. Cover it and let it proof again for another 45 min, or until the dough reaches the surface of the tray
  4. Brush on a layer of egg wash, then place it in a pre-heated 200C/390F degree oven for 20ish min, then let it cool for at least 20 min

 

So, 4 hours later, you have a loaf of the most beautiful bread among the 100+ types of bread out there, and your kitchen smells like what I imagine “happiness” is like, what are you going to do next? Well, the unfortunate truth is that you have to wait, about 6 hours to be exact. The reason why the French calls it “pain perdu” or “lost bread”, it’s because they used it as a way to reclaim stale or “lost” bread, let it absorb the egg and cream, pan-fried it in butter until it turns golden. So, just be patient, and wait until the loaf to slowly dry. And after 10 hours, let’s make some French toasts!

You’ll need these for the French Toasts:

  • about 10 slices 1-inch thick brioche bread
  • 2 whole eggs + 1 egg yolk
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cream
  • pinch of cinnamon & tiny pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp butter

How to make this:

  1. Whisk together the eggs & egg yolk with the sugar, vanilla extract, cream, cinnamon, and a tiny pinch of salt
  2. Place a butter in a pan over medium-low heat, soak the bread for about 2 sec then flip it and soak for another 2 sec
  3. Place the soaked bread on the pan, cook for about 2 min, flip and cook for another 2 min, sprinkle with some sugar, then repeat and cook each side for another 2 min, the total cook time should be around 8 to 10 min over medium-low heat
  4.  Serve it with powdered sugar, syrup or some fresh fruits

 

IMG_6594

(Brioche Bread)

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