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The endless beauty of the egg – Five spice French toast

August 7, 2009

I enjoy eggs at least two or three different ways a week. Even when I decide I need a break from the egg I end up using the egg! It adds so much to so many dishes. Yesterday morning was a perfect example. The family was hungry and IMG_0724I only had a few minutes to come up with something. We had some day old rustic bread. I decided to do a five spice French toast. I sliced the bread thick. I whisked together two eggs and a cup of milk. (A pinch of salt of course) I wanted a twist. I love the way five spice (a blend of star anise, cinnamon, clove, fennel seeds and Szechuan peppercorns) is the perfect rub for any meat. When it cooks it creates a sweet, aromatic, slightly chewy crust with just a touch of spice. Because of the baking spices in it I thought why not French toast? It was perfect! The day old bread was just firm enough to hold itself together as the five spice/egg mixture transformed the bread into “crème brulee” as it browned on the griddle. After dipping the bread in the egg mixture I then coated both sides with Panko bread crumbs. This gave the French toast an extra crisp finish which was the perfect balance to the creamy center. To balance the five spice I caramelized some IMG_0726sweet peaches with a touch of sugar and butter. I mounded the peaches on top of the crispy French toast and then poured really good maple syrup into the same pan as the peaches were in. It created a syrup “sauce” as the maple syrup blended with the caramelized peach bits in the pan. I poured that over the top. My kids loved it as the five spice became an awesome backdrop that made the French toast special for my wife and me but familiar enough for the kids.

Eat well, enjoy life, be happy.

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14 Comments leave one →
  1. tam permalink
    August 7, 2009 9:41 am

    Just YUM!

    You write as good, if not better, than you present….I feel touched by your words and my mouth waters!

  2. Margaret OBrien permalink
    August 7, 2009 12:49 pm

    Ingredient Smuggler? More like Ingredient Alchemist….This sounds amazing…and so versatile, whatever fruit is in season would probably be lovely. The Food Network can have Melissa, I’m sticking with you…

  3. Kristi permalink
    August 8, 2009 10:43 am

    Wow Jeffrey! You certainly have an amazing talent for describing food 🙂 That french toast looks and sounds sooo delicious!
    By the way, you did an awesome job on the Next Food Network Star, and I would love to see you on the food network soon 🙂

  4. August 8, 2009 2:40 pm

    This looks great! I will have to try this. Sorry for your loss but somehow I feel we will still see you on the network. We have a mutual friend-Tom Kiely. He had emailed me saying you were on the show. Fun to find your blog.

    • Jeffrey Saad permalink
      August 10, 2009 10:19 pm

      Hello cheri, I love Tom, what a small world!! Thanks for checking out the blog. Take care,
      Jeffrey 🙂

  5. August 10, 2009 6:21 am

    Mmmm. Panko crust on french toast? That sounds delightful. If my 15-month old were slightly more patient in the morning…

  6. jonnyfrog permalink
    August 12, 2009 4:40 pm

    wowee! that sounds deeee-lishus! it’s peach season here in the pac nw- and that’s now on my list of things to do with ’em! five spice is so versital- it’s what too much chinese bbq pork (char su) lacks in my little corner world.

    • Jeffrey Saad permalink
      August 12, 2009 11:33 pm

      Enjoy! Let me know how it turns out.
      Jeffrey 🙂

  7. August 15, 2009 11:39 am

    I must make this! Fabulous.

  8. Jeane permalink
    August 25, 2009 5:10 pm

    I made this this w/e at our trailer camp site up in the Lake Tahoe CA area.
    This was just WONDERFUL. The Panko idea just took the french toast to a whole new level.
    I sauteed the fresh peaches in a bit of cointreau with the butter and maple syrup.
    We are still talking about this!
    Thank you Jeffrey!

    • Jeffrey Saad permalink
      August 26, 2009 8:18 am

      Awesome Jeane!!! Well done. Jeffre 🙂

  9. George P permalink
    August 30, 2009 6:28 am

    Thanks for the great idea. Can’t wait to try it.

    I love Five-Spice powder, but have never tried making it from scratch. I got turned onto it in another chef’s Asian version of beer can chicken. It’s become a favorite dish, and I’m sure your French Toast will become one too.

    • Jeffrey Saad permalink
      August 30, 2009 8:52 am

      Thank you George, enjoy! Jeffrey

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