Friday, December 24, 2010

Eggnog french toast with cranberry-apple compote

With all of my Christmas presents bought and delivered, I finally booted my slacker self (I am from Austin) into the kitchen for some last-minute holiday cooking. This dish combines some wonderful holiday flavors: eggnog, cranberries, and apples. What could be more appropriate? Festive. Ridiculously delicious. This would be the perfect Christmas breakfast. (I know. I know. It's the day before Christmas. I promise I'll repost this recipe with a couple of weeks to spare next year.)

Eggnog french toast with cranberry-apple compote
(Adapted from recipes originally published in Bon Appétit, December 2001)

Eggnog french toast:
4 cups purchased eggnog
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 14.5-ounce country white bread loaf, halved horizontally, each half cut crosswise into 8 slices (do not use ends)

Unsalted butter
Powdered sugar

Whisk first 4 ingredients in large bowl. Place bread slices in single layer in two 13x9x2-inch glass baking dishes. Pour custard over bread, dividing equally. Cover dishes and refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 450°F. Butter 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Using spatula or tongs, transfer bread slices to prepared baking sheets. You may brush melted butter on the tops (I didn't do this). Bake 10 minutes. Turn over bread slices and bake until golden brown and crisp on the outside but soft on the inside, about 6 minutes longer. Place 2 french toast slices on each of 8 plates. Dust generously with powdered sugar; serve with cranberry-apple compote

Cranberry-apple compote:
2 cups apple cider
6 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter

3 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup sugar

Whisk apple cider, maple syrup, and brown sugar in heavy large saucepan. Boil over high heat until reduced to 1 cup, about 15 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons butter; whisk until melted. Remove from heat.

Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add apple pieces; sauté 2 minutes. Add cranberries and 1/2 cup sugar. Stir until cranberries begin to pop, about 2 minutes. Stir in reduced cider mixture. Boil until reduced to syrup consistency, about 6 minutes. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Stir over medium heat until heated through.) Transfer compote to bowl and serve warm.

Apples, cranberries, and sugar beginning to cook


  1. Looks/sounds amazing. My gang are big French toast fans and are always looking for new twists. Might try this for New Year's brunch. If I served anything but fruit bread toast and eggs for Christmas breakfast, my family would mutiny. :-) Merry Christmas!

  2. Gena, my whole extended family lounging around by the fire all agree this French toast looks scrumptious! Merry Christmas!

  3. Good Lord, that looks divine! I'm with Rhome, I think this will make it onto my New Year's brunch table. The in-laws will be with us next week. Merry Christmas!

  4. Merry Christmas to you!! I hope it was relaxed and filled with love. Rhome, what's fruit bread toast? Please share!

  5. I wrote out the recipe for fruit bread on December 21st in my blog post entitled "Including Another Grandma in Christmas - Her Fruit Bread."
    Basically, it'll work with any bread recipe...Just add the candied 'fruit cake fruit' and some walnuts. We always eat it toasted...We eat it at times other than on Christmas, but it's a 'must have' that day.


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