Let's be perfectly honest .... this is probably one of the most indulgent recipes on this blog. It's the holidays, I think we can all afford to enjoy a little extra indulgence.
You see, I have a thing for french toast. When I was a kid, I was a very early riser, so when I would get bored in the morning I would make breakfast for everyone. We're not talking complicated breakfast like poached eggs, more like boxed pancakes, aunt jemima, french toast, that sort of breakfast.
We had this awesome electric griddle that I would drag out from the closet, plug in, heat up, drop a mound of butter onto, and when it started to sizzle I knew it was ready. I remember that griddle so well, I loved that thing. It was a symbol of saturday mornings.
Though I am not dropping mounds of butter onto electric griddles these days, I still like to indulge with a piece of french toast every one in a while.
Through my years of making french toast on the weekends, I have learned a thing or two about how to make really good french toast. The bread. It's all about the bread. The type of bread, the way you treat the bread, the stale-ness of the bread.
Lot of different types of bread work, you can even use your favorite gluten-free kind if you like, but I think thata thick, hearty bread such as challah is definitely the best. And if you wait until it is a day or two old, it is even better. When it's too fresh, it tends to be too soft and does hold up to the liquid as well, causing soggy french toast. No one likes soggy french toast.
*A quick side note about the bread. If you want to make this truly vegan, then you need to find a vegan bread (made without eggs, butter, or milk). I have a great bakery by me that makes a beautiful seeded whole wheat challah that I love for this, but if you are feeling ambitious or you don't have good options, you can always make your own bread, or vegan challah.
If I am going to indulge in a french toast breakfast, I want it to be really really good french toast. But if that really really good french toast can be made with ingredients that are slightly healthier, but still taste the same or better, well that is the perfect french toast in my eyes.
I was a little skeptical as to how a "vegan" or dairy free french toast would taste. Would it need the egg and the milk, or could it be just as tasty with sweet coconut milk, nutmeg, and cinnamon.
I was so anxious to find out, I didn't even finish making my first batch, my fork dug straight into that first piece that came off the stove, and I was IN LOVE. It was so crazy good, I ate another three pieces all by myself that morning. While I do not necessarily recommend you do the same, I do recommend that you make this on a weekend or holiday morning for your family or friends, so that you can share and you are not tempted to eat it all yourself.
eggnog french toast | vegan
about 6-8 pieces of french toast
1 can of coconut milk
1/3 cup of coconut (or almond, or rice) milk
1/3 cup of water
1/4 cup of maple syrup
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
1/2 a teaspoon of salt
2 tablespoon of almond flour (or any flour of your choice, but I think a sweeter nut flour works best)
1 loaf of day old bread, (I like to use a whole wheat challah bread) sliced into thick 1-2" slices
*You can use any kind of bread that you like, if you want this to be gluten-free, use your favorite gluten-free loaf, but keep in mind, thick, hearty, day old bread works best.
a few tablespoons of vegan butter, or olive oil for frying
fresh grated nutmeg, maple syrup, powered sugar for toppings
- In a large shallow bowl, mix together all of the the ingredients for the vegan eggnog (all of the ingredients listed minus the bread).
- Then, set up your cooking station. Place a cast iron pan on the stove over medium heat and heat up about a tablespoon of the butter or oil. Have your sliced bread and bowl with the eggnog near the stove, and a clean plate for the finished pieces on the other side of the stove.
- Then, one at a time, very quickly dip the bread into the eggnog, once on each side. Do not let the bread soak in the liquid or else you will end up with soggy french toast.
- Place the piece of dipped bread onto the heated pan, and cook for about 5-7 minutes on each side, until it is nice and crisp and brown. Set it onto the clean plate. I like to do this one by one until all of the french toast is cooked.
- Serve warm, with some freshly grated nutmeg, vegan butter, maple syrup, and/or powered sugar.