- 1 lb. challah (or other bread, preferably day-old, see note below)
- 1 cup milk
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 cup navel orange juice
- 1 tsp navel orange zest plus more to garnish
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- pinch cinnamon
- sliced navel oranges for garnish
Maple Whipped Cream
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1.5 tbsp maple syrup (preferably medium or dark)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
To Serve (all optional)
- 1/4 cup raspberry puree or crushed raspberries, with or without seeds
- chocolate mint leaves
- powdered sugar
- navel orange zest
- orange slices
Navel Orange French Toast
- Slice the bread approximately 1 inch thick.
- Combine eggs, milk, orange juice and zest, sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Mix thoroughly.
- Soak each piece of bread in the egg/milk mixture for about 20 seconds per side (a little longer if you use staler or very airy bread, [e.g. baguette]). Remove the bread from the mixture, brushing off the excess, and set aside. If so desired, you can easily work in batches rather than soaking all of the slices before cooking.
- Heat a large cast iron skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add the pieces of bread and cook until golden brown (about 2 minutes). Flip and cook the other side.
Maple Whipped Cream
- Combine cream, maple syrup, and vanilla in the large non-reactive bowl (chilling the bowl and whisk can help make whipping the cream easier). Whisk with a hand/stand mixer (or by hand if you're a superstar) until the cream reaches relatively stiff peaks.
- Serve slices of French toast with whipped cream, and (optional) raspberry puree and orange slices. Use a small sifter to sprinkle a little powdered sugar over the slices and garnish with a bit of extra orange zest and mint leaves. The garnishes are optional, but the orange zest in particular is a really nice way to emphasize the citrus flavour. Likewise, the raspberry puree adds a contrasting sourness that really helps round out the dish, so include it if you can.
- If you can, avoid standard grocery-store loaf bread for this recipe - its softness and the fact that it soaks up a lot of egg mixture makes it overly dense and mushy. Challah is hands-down my favorite bread for making this (or any French toast), as it yields a very light and airy French toast while soaking up the egg/milk mixture perfectly. If you can't find challah, day-old French bread or ciabatta will also work well.
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