Spanish-Style French Toast with Anise Syrup (Torrijas)

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 50 min (includes soaking time)
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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Ingredients

Anise Syrup:

1 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup honey

1 tablespoon fresh orange zest

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 cinnamon sticks

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1/4 teaspoon anise extract

Spanish-Style French Toast (Torrijas):

1 day-old or stale thick French or Italian-style baguette

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups whole milk

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

Flaky sea salt, for garnish

Directions

  1. For the anise syrup: Combine 1 1/2 cups water with the sugar, honey, orange zest, salt and cinnamon sticks in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, about 3 minutes. Boil for 1 minute, then reduce to low heat and simmer until the mixture reduces to a thin syrup, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the almond and anise extracts.
  2. For the Spanish-style French toast (torrijas): Slice the baguette on the bias into 1-inch thick slices. Whisk together the eggs and milk in a shallow bowl. Dip the bread in the mixture and soak for 30 seconds to 1 minute (do not let the bread get too soggy).
  3. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook the soaked bread in batches until golden on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Repeat with the remaining bread, adding more butter as needed.
  4. Place the torrijas on a slightly concave or rimmed serving platter and cover fully with the Anise Syrup. Let soak at least 20 minutes before serving, if time allows. Serve warm or at room temperature sprinkled with a bit of the flaky sea salt.
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