Friday, May 15, 2009

Breaking the fast.

Breakfast is a dearly loved, but seldom practiced concept.  It is the first meal of the day, literally breaking the nightly fast of sleep.  As a very young child I mixed up the compound word by transforming breakfast into fastbreak, meaning in my childish brain "a quick break in the morning activity that required eating" or as I used to say to my parents,  "It's a fast break with food."  I used to try and avoid eating breakfast by saying, "I'll have my fastbreak later."  My mother, puzzled by my linguistic abnormality and my refusal to eat breakfast, explained to me the concept of breaking the fast of sleep with  a"break-fast" every morning.   Since then I have come to really love the days first meal and now I refer to it as breakfast.
I recently visited the Kihei Cafe on Maui and had the most wonderful french toast topped with bananas, crushed walnuts and a dust of confectioner's sugar.

When I got back home I was haunted by the memory of the rich, buttery, eggy dish.  
So, my husband and I recreated it at home.

Using day old bread, eggs, milk, and ripe bananas created joy on the breakfast table.

It turned out quite well.

Jeff's Easy French Toast

1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk
tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
dash of vanilla
4 medium-6 small slices day old bread (must be a good quality bread)
medium skillet or frypan
a little cooking oil or butter to keep the french toast from sticking to the pan
ripe banana or bananas 

Mix the eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla in a shallow bowl.  Dip and briefly soak the bread slices in the eggy mixture.  Put the pan on medium heat with a small amount of oil or butter.  When the pan is hot enough, place the eggy bread in the pan and cook until lightly browned on each side.  Top with sliced bananas and serve with butter, maple syrup or honey.
This is also yummy served with chopped walnuts, whipped cream or fresh berries.

French toast is a clever way to use up leftover, stale bread.  It was originally called pan perdu or "lost bread" but it is not lost in my home or my heart.

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