I’m a bit picky about breakfast.
If its not eggs, sausages, bacon, bread of some sort, or yoghurt and fruit, I kind of struggle. Even if its 1pm, I simply cant make Sushi or Pasta the first thing I eat in the day. Sorry, you couldn’t force feed me kedgeree for breakfast- that stuff is for dinner.
At home, we normally have Eggs Benedict, for any and all special occasions, including my Birthday on the 23rd December, then again on Christmas morning. But I found myself searching for something a bit different when I was in the midst of a frantic menu-planning afternoon. Stollen Muffins, Bacon and Syrup Pancakes, and homemade wholemeal loaf topped with buttery flakes of scrambled eggs, were all considered.
But this idea popped into my head last week, when I was visiting family in Lancashire. We wanted something healthy, but hearty and festive for breakfast.
Anyone who was friends with me when we were about 10, will know that I could have lived on a staple diet of Macaroni Cheese and Eggy Bread. Anyone who came to visit will inevitably have been treated to the customary Mumma Spurrell Eggy Bread- some with ketchup, some with vanilla sugar- absolute heaven!
So I was sat on my grandmas sofa when, as sometimes happens, I had a sudden nostalgic craving for comfort food made by mum- some good old eggy bread was in order.
In order to jazz it up a bit, I came up with the idea of serving it with a pile of soft, spiced fruit, and a dollop of creamy greek yoghurt. It was divine!
There are two versions of this recipe- the ‘light’ version, and the ‘luxury’ one. Choose as you please, both are delicious, but the luxury one might be more appropriate for this time of year! Nothing says ‘Christmas Indulgence’ quite like serving up what is basically a dessert, for breakfast.
Its also very easy to make- the apple compote can be made ahead and stored in a tupperware in the fridge, and the eggy bread can be kept warm in a warming oven for a while, as you assemble excited children, tired grandparents, and lay the table amid the wonderful chaos of christmas morning.
Enjoy some comfort food to relieve your shopping-tired feet, foodies.
Love and cinnamon
French Toast with Cinnamon Spiced Apples, and Greek Yoghurt.
- 4 x 2cm thick slices of crusty white loaf
- 3 or 4 eggs
- 120ml full fat milk
- a knob of butter, plus vegetable, rapeseed, sunflower, coconut oil, for frying (not extra virgin olive oil, basically)
- 4 apples, peeled, cored and diced to 1/2cm
- 1 heaped tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tbsp brandy
- 30g butter (for the apples)
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 3 tbsp honey
- 4 tbsp full fat Greek Yoghurt, plus a drizzle of honey.
- Preheat your oven to 180 degrees fan.
- Prep the apples. Heat the butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan over a medium heat. Add the apples and stir occasionally, softening for around 15 minutes. Add the spices, 1tbsp brandy and sugar after about 5 minutes, and the honey a minute or two before the apples are ready. Be careful with the heat, to make sure the sugar doesn’t burn, but instead dissolves and gently caramelises.
- Meanwhile, mix together the egg, milk, 1 tbsp brandy and add a sprinkle of ground cinnamon to make the custard for the bread.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Soak each side of the bread in the custard for about 1 minute, then allow the excess to run off, before placing in the frying pan. It should sizzle lightly when added.
- Fry for a few minutes on each side, to achieve a cgolden colour and a crispy outside. Place in a shallow oven-proof dish or tray, and pop in the oven for 5 minutes.
- Place each slice on a plate when cooked, and top with the apple compote, and a dollop of yoghurt, Finish with a drizzle of honey for added sweetness, and a sprinkle of sugar and cinnamon.
- 4 slices wholemeal bread
- 2 eggs
- 60ml semi-skimmed milk
- rapeseed or coconut oil, for frying
- 4 apples, peeled, cored, and diced to 1/2cm
- low cal spray, or a small knob of butter
- 1 heaped tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2tsp ground ginger
- 2 tbsp honey
- 4 tbsp low fat Total Greek Yoghurt
- Prep the apples. Heat the low cal spray, or butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan over a medium heat. Add the apples and stir occasionally, softening for around 15 minutes. Add the spices after
about 5 minutes, and the honey a minute or two before the apples are ready.
- Meanwhile, mix together the egg, milk, and add a sprinkle of ground cinnamon to make the custard for the bread.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Dip the bread into the egg and allow the excess to run off, before placing in the frying pan. It should sizzle lightly when added.
- Fry for a few minutes on each side, to achieve a golden colour and a crispy outside.
- Place each slice on a plate when cooked, and top with the apple compote, and a dollop of yoghurt, Finish with a drizzle of honey for added sweetness.