What's It All About—
This blog began as a side project when we opened Nook Eatery in 2009. In September 2012 we sold Nook, and sadly it now no longer exists. We have a new blog (see A Good Place to Gather). As always we remain inspired by the ingredients we use and the food we cook. This site remains purely as an archive of our three years at Nook Eatery and the recipes I created.
Pain Perdu, more commonly known as French Toast, translated means “lost bread”. Stale bread that may have otherwise been thrown away is instead used to make this delicious sweet eggy bread. We had some Oude Bank Bakkerij rustique and a jar of brandied cherries we made last December. Perfect for dessert or brunch.
thick slices stale white bread, crusts removed
4 large free-range eggs
100g caster sugar
200ml full cream milk … or even cream …
100g unsalted butter
1. In a mixing bowl whisk the eggs and sugar together for a couple of minutes to help dissolve the sugar, then add the milk and whisk again.
2. Tip this mixture into a shallow dish, large enough to take all the bread in a single layer. Lay the bread slices in the dish, leave to soak for a minute, then turn them over and leave for another minute.
3. In the meantime, set a frying pan over a medium heat. Once the bread has soaked, add a generous knob of butter to the pan – enough to just cover the bottom of the pan once melted. As soon as the butter is frothing (don’t let it brown) lay as many bread pieces in the pan as will comfortably fit, and fry 2-3 minutes on each side until golden brown.
4. Remove the pain perdu from the pan and keep warm while you fry the rest of the bread slices, adding more butter to the pan as necessary. Serve straight away.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Try to avoid throwing bread in the bin. Unless, of course, it is mouldy. Barring that unfortunate scenario, there are countless uses for an ageing loaf. Rip the bread up into big chunks, toss in olive oil and bake until golden for croutons to drop into your soup or to use in salads. Blitz slices of bread in a food processor to make breadcrumbs, both fine and coarse, and then store in the freezer. You will find endless uses for them, such as a crispy topping for pasta dishes or coating fish fillets and meat cutlets.