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05/02/2019

~ Mustard & Herb-Laced Brioche French Toast BLT's ~

IMG_1192A BLT served on savory whole-grain mustard- and herbs de Provence-laced brioche French toast -- need I say more?  If these adorable little sliders don't change the way you think about breakfast or brunch, I'm clueless as to what will.  Pair them with a bloody Mary or three and you've got a party.  Invite some friends and you've got a bigger party.  The best part is, I made these as an experiment, using day old savory French toast that had been in the refrigerator overnight, so, whipping them up for breakfast took only a little longer than it took to oven-roast this bacon:

IMG_1155

Sweet and savory French toast is common in European countries.  The French words for "French toast" are "pain perdu", meaning "lost bread", because it is a way of reviving bread which becomes dry after a day or two.  The basics of any French toast recipe are pretty simple:  Thickly-sliced, 2-3-day old bread is dipped into a flavored egg/cream sweet or savory mixture, then fried in a skillet containing a coating of oil or a combination of butter and oil.  When executed correctly, it emerges from the skillet crisp and golden brown on both sides with a creamy center.

IMG_1046For the savory French toast:

6,  3/4"-thick slices, 2-3 day old bread machine brioche

4  jumbo eggs

1  cup half and half

2  tablespoons whole-grain mustard

1  teaspoon each:  dry English mustard, Herbes de Provence and sea salt

1/2  teaspoon peppercorn blend 

4-6   tablespoons peanut or corn oil, for frying

6a0120a8551282970b0147e0e131e0970b 9.58.04 AM~ Step 1.  Using a serrated bread knife, slice the bread.  This is a picture of my bread-machine brioche.  If you have a bread machine, I obviously encourage you give this recipe a try.  If you are not using my brioche, I recommend that whatever bread you are using be sliced to the thickness of 3/4".  If it is thinner or thicker, it will affect the frying time and texture.  In my opinion:  All French toast starts with properly, 3/4"-thick sliced brioche.

IMG_1048 IMG_1048Step 2.  In a 2-cup measuring container, use a fork to whisk the eggs, half and half, whole grain mustard, English mustard, herbes de Provence, sea salt and peppercorn blend.  For six slices of bread, the magic measurement is 2 cups of liquid.

IMG_1053 IMG_1053 IMG_1053 IMG_1053 IMG_1053~Step 3.  Arrange bread slices in 13" x 9" x 2" casserole -- overlapping is ok.  Pour egg mixture over bread and wait 2-3 minutes.  Flip bread slices over on their second sides and wait another 2-3 minutes.  Flip the bread over again, then, maybe once more, to make sure each slice is thoroughly coated and almost all liquid has been absorbed.  Briefly set aside.

IMG_1069 IMG_1069 IMG_1069 IMG_1069 IMG_1069~Step 4.  Preheat enough oil to coat the bottom (about 1/16") of a 16" electric skillet over 260°-275° (medium on the stovetop).  Add the egg-soaked bread and gently cook, about 2-3 minutes per side, using a spatula to flip it over once, until golden on both sides.  Turn heat off and transfer French toast to a paper-towel-lined plate.  Cool to room temp, about one hour, then, assemble as directed, or cover with plastic and refrigerate overnight.

IMG_1161 IMG_1167 IMG_1169 2 IMG_1173 IMG_1176~Step 5.  One slice of French toast will yield two slider-sized sandwiches. I'm making four sliders today using two slices of savory French toast that have been cut into quarters to form eight pieces.  On each of four pieces of French toast, slather a scant 1 teaspoon of whole grain mustard. Next, fold and place 1 leaf Boston or bibb lettuce atop the mustard and fasten the lettuce with a toothpick.  Atop each lettuce leaf, add 2 thin slices Campari tomato to the toothpick on each slider, followed by 1 strip of the bacon that has been cut into thirds.  

Place the French toast tops on the slider sandwiches:

IMG_1178A savory French toast BLT is not a well-dressed sandwich...

IMG_1191... but it just might be the the perfect BLT of all time:

IMG_1214Mustard & Herb-Laced Brioche French Toast BLT's:  Recipe yields 6 slices savory French toast/enough for 12 BLT slider-sized sandwiches.

Special Equipment List: cutting board; serrated bread knife; 13" x 9" x 2" casserole; 2-cup measuring container; fork; 16" electric skillet; spatula; paper towels; plastic wrap; toothpicks

IMG_1118Cook's Note: Once a year, the day after Eastern European Orthodox Easter to be specific, my mother made one of my favorite breakfasts: Savory French toast w/Fried Ham & Eggs. She lightly-fried slices of baked ham (also leftover from Easter), soft-yolked, sunny-side-up eggs, and a fresh chive garnish (which grew in dad's garden).  Mom made this but once a year because that was when she had the very-specific ingredients at her fingertips -- and we all looked forward to it.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2019)

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