“Since hunger is the most primitive and permanent of human wants, men always want to eat, but since their wish not to be a mere animal is also profound, they have always attended with special care to the manners which conceal the fact that at the table we are animals feeding.” - John Erskine

10 January 2012

croissant french toast

Our beautiful breakfast perched like an exotic butterfly on a flower of fruit.

“Everything in moderation... including moderation.” -Julia Child

I don’t know about your family, but mine is always rushed in the morning.  I remember as a kid getting up to a homemade breakfast ~ oatmeal, pancakes, French toast ~ and having a leisurely meal chatting or even reading together around the breakfast table.  Of course, my mother not only had to get ready for work in the morning, but she is also an early riser ~ we’re talking 5:30 on a Saturday!  That, and I probably have a selective memory of what my childhood was like.  At our house, the alarm goes off at 7:15, I drag myself wearily out of bed, herd the sleepy animals out of their stalls and then it’s: pleasegetoutofbedanddressed!
(in other words, constant nagging, rushing, bullying) until we hear a horn honking in our driveway, or ~ worse yet ~ our carpool buddy is ringing the doorbell.  Breakfast usually consists of a rotation of cold cereal, hot cereal and toast shoveled down as quickly as possible.  And yes, I do feel like a horrible mother.  At least I’m not feeding them poptarts.  (Ok, I am feeding them poptarts, but only on Saturdays.  I have a strict no-sugar for breakfast on school days policy.)

As of January 1st we no longer have to be at church at 9 a.m., so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity for us to spend a leisurely meal chatting or even reading together around the breakfast table.  That, and to try out a few of the myriad breakfast recipes clogging up my recipe files.  Our first try was a huge hit.

Croissant French Toast
serves 4
source: taste of home
vanilla sauce:
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
4 egg yolks
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups whipping cream
½ cup sugar
2 scoops vanilla ice cream

berry sauce:
2 cups unsweetened raspberries
2 tablespoons sugar

French toast:
3 eggs
4 croissants, split
2 tablespoons butter

In a bowl, combine flour, egg yolks and vanilla; set aside.

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the whipping cream and sugar to a boil; remove from the heat.  Stir a small amount of hot cream into egg yolk mixture; return all to the pan, stirring constantly.  Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes.  Remove from the heat; stir in ice cream until melted.  Set aside.

Combine raspberries and sugar in a saucepan.  Simmer, uncovered, for 2-3 minutes.  Remove from the heat; set aside.

In a shallow bowl, beat eggs.  Dip both sides of croissants in egg mixture.  On a griddle, brown croissants on both sides in butter.

Serve with vanilla and berry sauces.

This time I followed the recipe exactly.  Really.  I did!  Ok, ok, I didn’t EXACTLY.  I doubled it.  And I was running low on cream, so I used 3 cups of whipping cream and 1 cup of milk.  Should have just halved the vanilla sauce (or undoubled it ~ yep, a real word, I looked it up) since we ended up having WAY too much vanilla sauce, even for my saucy husband.  That, and the milk curdled a bit while boiling.  I used some of my vanilla bean sugar for sugar in the vanilla sauce, and thought it added a nice touch, but I dont think it really needed the vanilla ice cream.  I dont know.  Try it and let me know what you think.  I also used frozen raspberries (still unsweetened though).  Hmm, I think that’s it.  See, I really did follow the recipe!

 I used the HUGE croissants from Sam’s Club, so I only ended up cooking 6 of them, instead of 8, three at a time in my very large electric fry pan.  My husband ate 2, and the rest of us had 1, and with a little fresh fruit on the side it was plenty.  They got snarfed up so quickly all there was left was a whiff of luscious raspberry sauce in the air.

Did I mention my husband is on a “health kick”?  After inhaling his breakfast he asked me if these were healthy.  My reply (to my pie-loving, insists-that-pie-is-a-“healthy”-dessert-because-it-has-fruit-in-it husband): It has great nutrition (after all, it has a bunch of fruit for antioxidants, vitamins and fiber, plus milk and egg for dairy and protein) and is at least as healthy, if not more so, than pie.

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