22 March 2007

How French is French Toast?

As a kid, I always looked forward to eating anything sugar-coated. Well, actually I still do, though I wouldn't consider myself a kid anymore. I don't know if it was just me or was every other kid in the universe, I would, before eating, make a mental note on which were the sections with the most white, crystalline substance (I do mean sugar) on it. Why? Well, so that I could eat the rest of the "not so delightful" portions and savour the sweetest at the end! I was the type who saved the best for the last. After I emptied the plates, the next procedure was naturally to ensure that I had as much of the sugar cystals as possible in my mouth. This was easily achieved by a quick lick of the spoon or fork or chopsticks or fingers. It didn't take KFC to get my fingers lickin' good.

Among all the sugar-sprinkled treats, french toast was one that really appealed to me, even more than Danish cookies and sugar rolls. I'm not sure why, but I was very attracted to the "cheap but good" stuff (I'm low maintenance). Even though I only knew about one of the many ways of enjoying french toast: simply served warm from the pan with a generous sprinkling of sugar; it was always amongst my favourite. I have since discovered many other ways of eating this simple bread dish, courtesy of the many food blogs I read.

French toast is also an excellent way of finishing up whatever remnants you have in your fridge. The last two slices of bread but sick of plain, old toast? Make french toast. The remaining 1/4 cup of milk; not enough to drink but too much to dump? French toast is the answer. Left with only one egg but not in the mood for a sunny-side up breakfast? Crack it, beat it and soak bread in it for french toast. So, who's not loving french toast? It's easy, it's quick, it's delicious and most importantly, it's French!

Ok, maybe I'm not so sure about the last one...

I don't think you would need a recipe for french toast, and there would probably be certain "secret" ingredients you like to add in your french toast's bath. I usually beat up an egg with a couple of tablespoonfuls of milk and half a teaspoon of sugar, add some ground cinnamon when I feel like it, even ground nutmeg for added spice. Leave slices of your favourite bread to soak for a couple of minutes, sizzle some butter in a pan, and let the magic begin! Because I still had extra custard from the last batch of tartlets , it didn't take me long to decide to spoon dollops of it over warm french toast and have it melt with the heat. Extra magic!

Don't forget to be generous with the sugar! I bet whoever came up with french toast did not have a scrooge in mind.

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