- 2 cups half-and-half or milk
- Three 3-inch cinnamon sticks, broken up into pieces
- 6 large eggs
- Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 3/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1 baguette (French bread), about 2 feet long
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Confectioners' sugar
- Marinated Berries, recipe follows
In a medium bowl, lightly beat the eggs with the nutmeg and sugar. Strain the half-and-half into the eggs and discard the cinnamon pieces. Whisk to make a smooth batter.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Slice the bread with a serrated knife on the diagonal, into 18 1-inch-thick pieces.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add half the butter. Dip 9 of the bread slices into the batter and add to the skillet. Cook the slices, turning once, until golden, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the toasts to a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining bread. Bake until the toasts are warmed through and slightly puffy, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Divide the toast on large plates and dust with confectioners' sugar. Top with the berries and serve immediately.
- Marinated Berries
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, and seeds scraped out with a knife and reserved
- Grated zest of 1/2 lemon
- Grated zest of 1/2 orange
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 pint raspberries
- 1/2 pint blueberries, rinsed
- 1/2 pint strawberries, rinsed, tops trimmed, halved or quartered, if large
In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, vanilla bean and seeds, citrus zests, and water. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Simmer very gently until syrupy, about 25 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the citrus juices. Combine the berries in a bowl. Strain the warm syrup over the berries and marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes. Serve.
Yield: 6 servings
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