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The Chronicle Express
  • Best Dish: Decadent French Toast

  • I had a small brunch for some friends just before Christmas, and this was one of the dishes that was served. What is great about the recipe is that it can be included with other dishes or just served with fresh fruit, juice and coffee.

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  • Name: Ginny Davis
    Age: 72
    City of residence: Cantrall, Ill.
    Occupation: Homemaker and proud grandmother of nine
    Family: Husband Jack; children Jill Egizii, Heather Schenck, Jack Davis
    Hobbies and interests, other than cooking: I love to read, garden, knit, swim in the summer and entertain my grandchildren. My husband and I also enjoy traveling, which we have been doing all of our married lives. We love to sample the cuisine and culture of each country.
    Favorite restaurant: Sotito’s in Punta Arenas, Patagonia, Chile for wonderful king crab.
    Favorite TV food show: Ina Garten’s “The Barefoot Contessa”
    Name of dish:Decadent French Toast
    History of the recipe: A friend of mine introduced me to the dish about 25 years ago. I have given the recipe to a lot of my friends and family.
    Did you tweak the recipe? Sometimes I add pecans or raisins to the sauce.
    Why do you like this recipe? I can put it together the night before and refrigerate until the next morning and then bake.
    Tell us about an occasion when you made the recipe for others: I had a small brunch for some friends just before Christmas, and this was one of the dishes that was served. What is great about the recipe is that it can be included with other dishes or just served with fresh fruit, juice and coffee.
    Any advice for someone who will be making the recipe? Use whole milk or half and half. Do not use skim milk.
    Describe your cooking style: I have always loved to cook. I started as a child and learned a lot from my family. My dad and my brother were both chefs. All my married life, I have loved to try new recipes. The three children and my husband would be my judge. Should I use the recipe again or not? Usually it was a thumbs up! I have cooked just about anything that you can name and I love to cook dishes from other cultures.
    Other dishes you have been complimented on? I like to make desserts and am usually asked to bring one to potlucks. I love to make shortbread cookies and people compliment me on how good they are. I also like to experiment with soups to see what new recipes I can come up with. I must say that my grandsons Jack and Charlie say that I make a mean plate of biscuits and gravy.
    Decadent French Toast
    1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
    Page 2 of 2 - 1/4 cup butter
    1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoon light corn syrup
    10 (1 3/4-inch-thick) slices French or challah bread
    4 eggs, beaten
    2 1/2 cups half and half
    1 tablespoon vanilla
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    3 tablespoons sugar
    1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
    1/4 cup butter, melted
    Combine first three ingredients in medium saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Pour syrup into lightly greased 13-by-9-by-2-inch baking dish. Arrange bread slices over syrup.
    Combine eggs, half and half, vanilla and salt; stir well. Gradually pour over bread slices and chill at least 8 hours or overnight.
    Combine sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle over soaked bread and drizzle melted butter over all. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Serve immediately. Serves 8-10.
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