While having brunch a couple of weeks ago with some friends, I found myself struggling to choose between two delicious yet different dishes: the Duck Egg Shakshuka, and the Cornflake Crusted French Toast.
Did I want savory or sweet? I ultimately went toward savory, and it was delicious. The Shakshuka was unlike mine, the tomatoes were really fresh and light. I enjoyed it immensely.
Flash forward a couple of weeks later and I still hadn’t shaken the idea of cornflake crusted french toast. It stayed with me, so this weekend when I opened the pantry and spotted my lonely box of cornflakes, I decided to acquire all of the ingredients so I could make a version of it at home.
I used Ina Garten’s French Toast recipe as the base, because it’s one of the best renditions of French Toast I’ve eaten. Her custard is eggy and not sweet, and the orange zest and vanilla really perfume the Challah bread beautifully.
Once the bread has soaked in the egg mixture, I breaded each piece in a mixture of crushed cornflakes and sliced almonds. It added a really great crunch to the finished toast. Two pieces, along with some coffee, was enough for the two of us to share.
Cornflake Crusted French Toast
- 1 loaf day old Challah bread, sliced into 3/4″ to 1″ thick pieces
- 6 large eggs
- 1½ cups whole milk
- 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups partially crushed cornflakes
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- unsalted butter
- canola oil
- grade B maple syrup
- raspberry preserves or apple butter (optional)
- fresh berries, to garnish (optional)
- sifted powdered sugar (optional)
Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
I find this recipe works best when the Challah is a day old and pre-sliced the night before. You wan the pieces to be a little on the thick side, so anywhere between 3/4″ to 1″ is the ideal width.
In a large shallow bowl (I used a pyrex baking dish) whisk together the eggs, milk, orange zest, vanilla, salt, and honey. In another large bowl combine the cornflakes and almonds and partially crush them with your hands. Soak all of the bread pieces in the egg mixture, turning once until the custard is absorbed, about 3-4 minutes. Place the bread in the cornflake mixture, and bread each piece, making sure to press the cornflake and almonds into the bread.
Heat 1 tablespoon of butter, and 1 tablespoon of canola oil into a large skillet (I used nonstick) over medium heat. Add the bread to the skillet and cook for 2 – 3 minutes on each side, until nicely browned. I like to drain my pieces on paper towels before popping them into the oven to keep warm while I finish making the rest of the french toast pieces. Continue adding butter and oil to the pan as needed to cook the remaining slices of bread.
Serve hot with maple syrup, preserves or apple butter, and powdered sugar, if using.