Thursday, August 9, 2012

My Favorite Creole Dish Ever!

Dear Lauren,

Remember the Crusty Bread? Remember the Pinot Noir Syrup?

Watch closely.

You can

the butter melting right before your very eyes!

This has always been my favorite French Toast recipe. But with this bread...the Oh Wow Bread? Even better!

Are you asking yourself where's the Creole dish????

This recipe is from a tiny little cookbook that I've had for years. It was printed in 1994 and I think I bought it on a trip with Dad to New Orleans in 1995.  I was so surprised to see that it's still in print, still selling, and I think it costs more than I paid for it years ago! 

Pain Perdu (“lost bread” in French) is just another name for French Toast. The cookbook states, "The bread is “lost” only in the sense that it is temporarily invisible while it's saturated in the egg mixture." I like this creative name for an old classic, don't you? And is there a better way to use stale bread? 

The best version for me is definitely served with butter and powdered sugar but you can serve it with syrup, preserves or fresh fruit.. Or make it a savory dish topped with roasted vegetables (omit the sugar in this recipe if you try a savory dish). This is the best French toast I’ve ever had. 

Pain Perdu
adapted from The Best of New Orleans Cookbook
6 large eggs,
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 cups milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
10 3/4" slices of day-old Oh Wow Bread
powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 200 degrees (you can omit this step if you plan to serve right off the griddle like we do!).

In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the eggs and granulated sugar. Then add milk, vanilla, and cinnamon and whisk til combined. 

Heat a large skillet over medium low heat, then add about a teaspoon or so of butter, enough so that pan is coated. Take a slice of bread and put it in the egg mixture, turning it over and back a few times til well coated and a little but saturated but not falling apart. Cook over medium low heat for about 4-5 minutes, flipping it halfway through. The bread will become golden brown on both sides. Don't think you can turn the heat up higher to make the process go faster. The low heat allows for the bread to cook all the way through.

Mostly we just eat this right out of the skillet, one person at a time! But you can take your cooked pieces and put them in the oven until ready to serve. 

There have been a few times that I've made a double batch and had some leftover. After making sure it's completely cooled, I bag each piece separately in a Ziploc and then put all of the bagged pieces in a labeled, gallon-sized Ziploc and put them right in the freezer. When someone wants a quick breakfast, or snack, or really for any meal, they can just take a piece out and pop it in the toaster! Instant Pain Perdu!



  1. My favorite breakfast is french toast with bacon! I WILL make this version. YUMMY!!

    1. I keep meaning to make the pancakes with the crispy bacon slice right in the center! Have you seen it? Like this:

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