What makes the perfect French toast? Is it in the bread or perhaps the egg batter. Do you serve it with a waterfall of maple syrup or a sprinkling on powdered sugar? However you serve it, one thing is for sure, preparing a French toast recipe should be quick and easy. It's a simple dish of bread soaked in an egg mixture then fried, and hopefully not soggy.
The history of French Toast goes all the way back to a reference in the Apicius, a collection of Latin recipes that dates all the way back to the 4th or 5th century. Simply, "slice fine white bread, remove the crust and break it into large pieces. Soak these pieces in milk and beaten egg, fry in oil, and cover with honey before serving."
So was it later invented in France? Not exactly. While the French have their own version, "pain perdu", they cannot take the fame for creating what we call modern-day French Toast. In fact, it was a grammatically incorrect New York innkeeper Joseph French who created the French Toast recipe served at brunches everywhere. All he forgot was an apostrophe.
The French may have invented the baguette and the brioche bread, but a guy who ran an inn got dibs on the French Toast. When it comes to breakfast and brunch recipes American's know how to do it big.
How to Make French Toast
First things first, you have to think about the bread. You can use white bread slices or wheat bread slices, but if you want something a bit sweeter, I highly suggest buying a loaf of challah and slicing it into thick slices. You can also buy Texas Toast, sourdough or French bread as an alternative for something crispy. This bread makes the best French toast in my opinion because it holds together better than sandwich bread.
Once you have your slices of bread it's time to turn to your egg and milk mixture. The Classic French Toast features whole milk, eggs, vanilla extract and a dash of ground cinnamon. Depending on how decadent (or light) you would like your toast to be, you can use half-and-half or low-fat milk. You can change it up and try heavy cream, but it'll definitely add on the carbohydrates and cholesterol. Heck, you can even use almond milk or coconut milk if you would like. Just be sure to whisk it together in a shallow dish to make dipping the bread slices a little easier.
Meanwhile, preheat a nonstick frying pan (or griddle) over medium heat and add a bit of butter. Once the butter is nice and bubbling, dip the bread slices into the egg mixture and place into the pan, making sure to not flip until golden brown. Remember to go ahead and put any unused bread in a container or you'll create stale bread very easily. The total time varies between 2-3 minutes per side.
Once cooked, place the easy French toast on a plate and top with everything your heart desires, including peanut butter, Nutella and the classic maple syrup. This if your opportunity to have the best bread of your life. Personalize this to make it into your best French toast recipe.
Take a look at some of our favorite French Toast recipes:
Classic French Toast
It doesn't get any more classic than this easy French toast recipe. Serve these toasts warm with a light drizzle of maple syrup.
Bananas Foster French Toast
Texas toast and a thick topping of brown sugar caramel turn this brunch recipe into something special. Top with fresh whipped cream to make this meal complete.
Fluffy French Toast
What do you get when you combine French toast and pancake batter? Fluffy French toast!