Vanilla Rum French Toast

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When it comes to food I have two guilty pleasures that come close to obsessions. The first I unfortunately have no recipe to share with you. It’s a cereal from my childhood that recently made somewhat of a comeback. It is Quisp from Quaker.

I don’t know what it is about Quisp, but every once in a while we go to an outlet grocer and I feel like Mel Gibson’s character in Conspiracy Theory.  You remember how he couldn’t leave a book store without buying a copy of Catcher in the Rye. Well I can’t leave the outlet store without buying at least three or four boxes of Quisp. Karen even says I look like a lunatic searching the shelves and bins for all the boxes of Quisp. As much as I love Quisp let’s get back to my other obsession and the topic for this post, French Toast.  I mean I am obsessed with any and all French Toast, and this goes back for many years. When I was a young kid, maybe 10 or 11, my maternal grandparents took my cousin and I on a cross country road trip from Pennsylvania  to southern California, up to northern California and back to Pennsylvania.  I had French Toast for breakfast at least 95% of the time. I ate everywhere from chain restaurants to truck stops even at the mess hall when we stopped to see my older brother who was in the Air Force at the time.

I like everything from griddle fried to backed French Toast, even deep fried French Toast sticks. On every thing from regular store bought sliced bread to leftover doughnuts. I like traditional to Panko crusted, plain to stuffed.  I even have one recipe that I will share in the coming weeks that combines my beloved Quisp with French Toast.

But this weekend we decided to have a traditional French Toast breakfast. We normally use a French Baguette for this recipe but today we had some leftover Brioche Hamburger Buns that were beginning to go stale, which is the best time to use bread for French Toast so we went with the Brioche.

The hardest part of this was thinly slicing the outer crust from the bun to allow the custard to penetrate both sides of the bread. I did this on the top and bottom then cut each bun into thirds to get 3 equal slices.  I then set up my griddle, I use a Cuisnart Griddler, and preheat to 375.

While the griddle if preheating I begin making the custard.  There is nothing real fancy about this custard. I like a rich thick custard.  I start with 4 large eggs, and 3/4 cups milk.  Then I add 2 small things to make it special.  Most people add either pure vanilla or vanilla extract however I found something different.  I like to add 1/4 cup of vanilla coffee creamer. And to finish off I add 1/2 teaspoon of rum extract or tablespoon of light rum.  And whisk thoroughly.  By this time the griddle should be up to heat. So I grease the griddle with butter. You could use a cooking spray but i don’t like all the chemicals in the aerosol sprays so i just wipe down the griddle with butter, then I run the bread though the custard. When dunking the bread into the custard I like to press down lightly all along the surface of the bread.  I do this because I have found that as the bread springs back to shape it tends to absorb more of the custard inside the bread. It is important to only soak as much bread as you can cook at one time, don’t let a slice of bread sit in the custard while others are cooking.

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Transfer each slice from the custard to your griddle. Heat until golden brown.  Flip and cook 2nd side until golden brown. Remove from griddle top with butter and syrup.

The best thing about this French Toast is it is nice and slightly crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside.

This weekend we made it with a side of breakfast sausage from Man Cave Craft Eats.  We have tried several different products from Man Cave and will be doing a review of them, not something I really had in mind to do for this blog but I think Man Cave deserves it. Bacon or any other breakfast meat will work great with French Toast.

Ingredients:

9 slices of Brioche rolls at least 1/2 thick

4 large eggs

3/4 cup milk

1/4 cup vanilla coffee creamer

1/2 teaspoon rum extract

Directions:

Preheat griddle or skillet

Mix all ingredients for custard

Dunk bread in custard

Place on griddle or skillet until underside is golden brown

Flip and cook until golden brown on second side

Serve with butter and syrup

(Optional top with powdered sugar)


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