Taste of Honey
Makes 4 servings
Thick slices of rustic bread, soaked with a mixture of milk, honey, eggs, and vanilla, brown
quickly in a pool of hot butter. Honey is drizzled over the golden, eggy slices and allowed to
quickly caramelize in the hot skillet. Serve plain, with Earl’s Honey Butter Sauce (page 158), or
with a summery mixture of sliced peaches macerated in honey, lime juice, and snipped mint.
Once honey is caramelized it is difficult to pick out the subtle nuances that are present in uncooked honey, so for this recipe I stick with a mild table variety such as clover, alfalfa, or orange blossom.
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Place the bread in a single layer in a large, shallow roasting pan or baking dish.
In a bowl, whisk the milk, eggs, honey, and vanilla. Pour evenly over the bread. Soak for
about 30 minutes, tilting the pan often and using a spoon to distribute the milk mixture over
the bread. Press the bread lightly with the back of the spoon to encourage it to absorb all of
the liquid. Sprinkle with the cinnamon.
Heat a heavy skillet large enough to hold the bread in a single layer, over medium heat.
Add the butter and tilt the pan until the butter melts and evenly coats the bottom. Add the
soaked bread and cook for about 3 minutes, or until browned on the bottom, adjusting the
heat to maintain a steady but gentle sizzle. Turn the bread with a wide spatula and brown
the other side for about 3 minutes. Drizzle the honey evenly over the tops and cook for
about 1 minute, or until the honey begins to bubble. Turn the bread over and brown the
other side, spooning the bubbling honey over the top.
Transfer the French toast to a platter and serve plain, with warmed honey butter sauce.