Chocolate French toast? You bet

Associated PressMay 1, 2013 

You wouldn't think French toast and chocolate go together, but looking at this, it seems a natural.

COURTESY ASSOCIATED PRESS

Time for a confession: As a child, I never once celebrated Mother's Day, which is on May 10. My parents thought the holiday was nothing more than a cheesy excuse to sell greeting cards, and who was I to argue? But after I became a mother myself? Oh. My. God.

I'd spent years working 80 hours a week as a restaurant chef, and that was nothing compared to the amount of work required of the mother of a newborn. I buckled down and got the job done, but not without help. And not before establishing that in our house, we'd most certainly be celebrating Mother's Day. And not just once a year, but once a week. Every Sunday.

At my insistence, the Husband did just as much diaper-changing, baby-bathing and bottle-feeding as yours truly. I also charged him with preparing and serving me breakfast in bed on Sunday mornings.

Of course, he's not really a cook, not even much of a home cook, so I reassured him that the meal didn't have to be fancy. All I needed was a cup of hot coffee and something on a plate or in a bowl that I could eat at my leisure.

In the years since, I came up with a dish that incorporates two of daughter Ruthie's favorite things, French toast and chocolate. And I added one of mine, raspberries. Not only did my little chocoholic love the taste of our French toast, she also loved to make it.

The following recipe is perfect for breakfast in bed for mom on Mother's Day. Complement the finished French toast with some freshly squeezed orange juice and a pot of freshly brewed coffee, and you're off to the races.

What you'll need:

  • One pint (two cups) fresh raspberries, plus extra to garnish.

  • Quarter cup sugar, divided.

  • Two large eggs.

  • Two large egg whites.

  • One cup of 1 percent milk.

  • One and a half teaspoons vanilla extract.

  • Pinch of table salt.

  • Eight slices whole-wheat bread, lightly toasted.

  • Three ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped.

    Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a blender or food processor, combine the raspberries with 2.5 tablespoons of the sugar. Puree, then pour through a mesh strainer. Discard the seeds and set aside the sauce.

    In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and egg whites. Add the milk, vanilla, salt and remaining 1.5 tablespoons of sugar. Whisk until well combined.

    Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium. Dip two slices of the bread in the egg mixture until well soaked. Place the soaked slices in the skillet and sprinkle each with a quarter of the chocolate.

    Dip another two slices of bread in the egg mixture, then set them on top of the chocolate, pressing gently but firmly so the pieces adhere.

    Cook for three minutes, then carefully flip and cook for another three minutes. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining bread and chocolate, coating the pan with additional cooking spray.

    When all of the stuffed French toast has been cooked in the skillet and transferred to the baking sheet, bake in the oven for 10 minutes, or until cooked through.

    Cut each portion in half on the diagonal, drizzle with some of the raspberry sauce and garnish with additional raspberries.

    Start to finish: 45 minutes. Servings: Four. Nutrition information per serving: 380 calories; 130 calories from fat (34 percent of total calories); 14 g fat (6 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 95 mg cholesterol; 54 g carbohydrate; 9 g fiber; 26 g sugar; 17 g protein; 400 mg sodium.

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