When most people think of French toast, they probably think of vaguely soggy, eggy bread that’s fried and then served with some sort of syrup to mask the damp factor. Personally, I’ve always gravitated towards savory French toast, but whether you’ve added some herbs and salt to your eggy batter, or doused the end product in jam and powdered sugar, it’s really all the same underneath, isn’t it?

It doesn’t have to be. To anyone who has ever crammed mediocre French toast in their face and then bemoaned how awful the stuff is, I say this: STUFF IT!

Making stuffed French toast is easy and fun, and you get to choose what kind of flavor profile you’d like. This breakfast dish doesn’t have to be relegated to the sidelines of cheap buffets ever again! Here’s our no-fail ‘how-to’ for how to make French toast:

Stuffed French Toast

Ingredients:

  • One loaf of your favorite bread, unsliced
  • Eggs (estimate one extra-large egg per sandwich)
  • Butter or margarine
  • Your filling of choice (options will be listed below)

With a serrated knife, slice hunks of bread that are approximately equivalent to two individual slices … so, maybe an inch and a half thick. Set these aside, and prepare your filling.

Using that same serrated knife, cut down the center of each thick bread slice as though dividing it into two slices, but stop when you’re about half an inch from the bottom. Hold the two halves apart and stuff the inside with your filling of choice. Whether your filling is spreadable or more substantial, be generous with it: this isn’t diet food. (Granted, this isn’t “let’s have this every weekend” food either, so it’s best to only make this dish on special occasions, or when you’re not being neurotic about your calorie intake.)

Crack your eggs into a large-yet-shallow bowl and beat them with a whisk or large fork until they’re well combined. I like to add a tablespoon or so of milk to this mixture, but that’s entirely your call. If you’re making savory stuffed toast, feel free to add a pinch of Herbes de Provence or other favorite dried herbs to this mixture. For sweet toast, a sprinkle of cinnamon works with just about everything.

Heat a bit of butter or margarine in a non-stick pan on medium-high heat. When it’s a lovely golden brown and starting to bubble, take your closed bread pocket, dip it quickly into the eggy mixture (so that it’s coated, but not saturated), and then drop it into the pan. If you’re making more than one, repeat the process until you’ve filled the pan with sandwiches, taking note of which was added first. Turn the heat down to medium and cook until you can see that the edges have browned, then use a spatula to flip it/them over, beginning with the first one that was dropped into the pan. Fry that until the bottoms are as brown as the tops, and serve immediately. If desired, have some maple or agave syrup handy for your sweet toast, or salt and pepper shakers available if you’ve made them savory.

Filling Ideas

What you choose to stuff into your French toast is entirely up to you, so you have free rein to pack in any flavor combination that you love. When I was a child, my favorite combination was Cheez Whiz and pickles on raisin bread (much to my parents’ disgust), which just goes to prove that tastes are indeed unique to individuals. This is your opportunity to go nuts and create something that’ll make your toes curl. Just take note that not everyone will share your tastes, so it’s best to ask others what they’d like if you’re cooking for a group.

Sweet:

  • Cream cheese with strawberry jam and/or fresh strawberry slices
  • Peanut butter and Nutella
  • Apple pie filling
  • Cherry pie filling
  • Nutella with sliced bananas
  • Cream cheese mixed with lemon juice and sugar
  • Clotted cream with blueberry jam
  • Peanut (or other nut) butter with your favorite jam/jelly

Savory:

  • Brie or Camembert with sliced pears
  • Grated sharp cheddar with caramelized onions and/or fried mushrooms
  • Brie and avocado
  • Hummus with roasted red pepper
  • Pesto and sliced tomatoes
  • Sliced ham and grated cheese
  • Crispy bacon and a fried egg
  • Grilled asparagus and lemon aioli

Now that you’re undoubtedly drooling into your lap, you can take these ideas and make them your own. If you come up with a great flavor combination, please share it with us in the comments below!

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Featured photo credit: roboppy via photopin cc

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