Burg’s French Toast
When I wrote about Molly Wizenberg’s new book, A Homemade Life, I mentioned that reading the book inspired me to get into the kitchen immediately and start cooking. There’s no better example of that than the Saturday morning that I hopped out of bed, where I was spending a lazy morning reading, to make Burg’s French Toast.
For the most part, this is a basic french toast recipe. Nothing special in the ingredients list anyhow. The difference comes in the cooking method–this french toast is fried in oil, almost deep fried, which gives it a crispy coating, while keeping the inside a soft, almost custard-like filling. It was delicious.
The results reminded me of Alton Brown’s french toast, but with much less fuss. AB suggests starting it in a skillet, then baking it in the oven to get the crispy outside/soft inside. This was much easier.
Burg’s French Toast
Adapted from Molly Wizenberg’s A Homemade Life
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- canola or other flavorless oil, for frying
- 6 to 8 slices of day-old bread, cut on the diagonal, about 3/4″ thick.
- Pure maple syrup, for serving
1. In a wide, shallow bowl or pie plate, whisk the eggs with milk, sugar, vanilla, salt, and nutmeg until blended.
2. Place a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, and pour in enough oil to completely coat the bottom of the pan. Heat the oil until you can feel warmth radiating from it. The oil is ready when a drop of the egg mixture flicked gently into the pan sizzles on contact.
3. Meanwhile, once the oil is ready, put two or three slices of bread into the egg mixture, allowing each side to soak for between 30 seconds and a minute. They should be heavy, but not falling apart.
4. Carefully place the soaked bread slices into the oil. They will sizzle, and oil will bubble up around the edges. The toast cooks very quickly, so keep an eye on them, flipping them every one or two minutes.
5. Remove to a plate lined with a paper towel and allow to sit for a minute or two before serving. Repeat with the remaining bread. Serve french toast hot with pure maple syrup.
Note: Molly recommends using “French Bread” with a soft, light crumb and thin crisp crust. And for half of the french toast, that’s exactly what I used. But for the other half, I used leftover (slightly stale) hamburger buns. I used a bread knife to very lightly trim the crusty top and bottoms off of the bun, and it worked surprisingly well.
I’m also indebted to Leah’s parents, who sent her real Maple syrup from their own trees, and to Leah, for being kind enough to share it!