Crunchy French Toast with Whiskey Butter

Ingredients:

1 cup cornflakes

1/2 cup light cream or half and half

1/2 cup milk (preferably not skim)

2 large eggs

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

16 thickly cut slices from day old bread

(or fresh bread in 260 degree oven for 5-10 minutes)

1 tablespoon butter for greasing your skillet or griddle

 

Make maple-whiskey butter. This can be made ahead of time if put in the refrigerator or freezer. Put corn flakes in a Ziploc bag and securely close bag, pressing flat so that there are no air pockets in the bag. Place bag on counter, and with a rolling pin crush the corn flakes. Pour onto a plate or into a pie pan.

In large shallow dish whisk eggs and then add in maple syrup, cinnamon, cardamom, and vanilla. Slowly add milk and half and half to mixture, whisking briskly until milk is thoroughly incorporated and egg-milk mixture looks foamy. Heat your skillet or griddle over medium-low heat. Add four slices of bread to egg-milk mixture, turning them, so that all surfaces are coated. We trimmed the crusts off our bread when we were testing out this recipe. Let them soak for about 30 seconds. Pick up a slice of bread. It should feel wet but not thoroughly saturated.

Add each slide of bread to plate of corn flakes. With your fingers, press bread down lightly into the corn flakes crumbs and turn bread from side to side until all surfaces are coated with corn flakes. Grease pan or griddle with butter and cook slices of bread, undisturbed, for about 90 seconds to 2 minutes, then flip. Cooked side should be golden brown and look nice and crunchy.

Turn heat down if crumbs on French Toast are looking blackened. Cook second side of bread for same amount of time, then remove to serving platter. Serve immediately with pats of maple-whiskey butter, fresh sliced strawberries or blueberries and, another drizzle of Vermont maple syrup on top.

Maple-Whiskey Butter

2 ounces unsalted butter at room temperature

3/4 teaspoon maple extract

3/4 teaspoon whiskey or bourbon or vanilla for a non-alcoholic version

2 pinches sea salt

1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon finely chopped, toasted pecans

In small bowl, add butter, maple extract, whiskey, sea salt, and brown sugar. Mix with a large spoon until well combined. Add pecans and stir into butter. Take butter out of bowl and place on one end of a sheet of plastic wrap about 14 inches long. Fold sides of plastic wrap over butter, then wrap plastic wrap tightly around butter, forming butter into a log. Chill butter in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes, so that it firms up just slightly.

Recipe adapted from Food52.com