Vive la French Toast!

Not many meals can give me such a warm and fuzzy feeling as French toast. Since childhood, I look forward to Sunday breakfast to include freshly-squeezed orange juice and thick, buttery slices of bread dipped in batter and grilled, leaving it oh-so-crispy on the outside and soft, warm, and gooey on the inside. It’s one of those meals that leaves me feeling so stuffed at the end of it, but sad that there’s no more when I’m done! As Italian as my parents were (both of them immigrants), French toast was always welcomed on Sundays. Back then, though, we had plain white bread instead of the brioche used in the recipe below. Over time, I’ve “sophisticated” my taste and am glad I can appreciate the heavenly goodness of the French toast I eat now, with all due respect to my mom.

Today, Marc and I celebrated two weeks since he quit smoking by heading over to our favorite brunch place around the corner, 7A. We used to have their French toast practically every week, but then we realized it wasn’t the healthiest thing to do, so it’s been a few months since we’ve been there…and, oh, how we enjoyed going back! I’m sure the recipe that follows is close enough to the awesome one they serve up, but I have to admit I’ve never made it myself as I’d rather walk 50 feet and have them serve me instead.

After our brunch, we quickly showered and took off for a day of shopping in the ‘hood. Memorial Day weekend, as most of summer, is fairly quiet here in the East Village, so we took advantage of going around town while everyone else was gone.

I was totally digging roaming about until we ended up in midtown, only to find out, apparently, that THIS is where everyone goes when they’re not at the beach. We ended up in H&M and Bed, Bath & Beyond, but it wasn’t as bad as I feared, with the exception that I spent nearly $300 and still never ended up with the vacuum cleaner we had set out to get in the first place. But, I have a really pretty camisole, and a nifty blazer, so who cares about a dirty apartment when I’m looking so cute?!?

Today’s recipe:
3 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
6 slices brioche
2 bananas, ripe
1 stick butter combined with 2 Tbsp rum (or 1/2 tsp rum extract) warmed and melted over low heat, about 5 minutes

Beat first six ingredients in medium bowl. Dip each slice of bread into batter, coating both sides well. Grill in pan coated with 2 Tbsp butter or oil over medium heat until crisp, about 4 minutes per side. Serve with sliced banana and drizzle with rum butter.

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