Brioche French Toast with Bananas Foster

brioche-and-bananas-foster
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  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings

The very thought of this dish is enough to make you hungry! Don Strange loved to create elaborate and extravagant dishes for his brunches. This is one that he served at a lovely wedding brunch outside of Fredericksburg, in the Texas Hill Country. It was just one of many dishes served at the bruch that day, but certainly one of the most well-loved.

Ingredients

Brioche French Toast
1cup whole milk
1cup whipping cream
4 eggs
1teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
butter
8 5/8-inch thick slices of day-old brioche
sweetened whipped cream
real maple syrup
mint springs, as garnish
Bananas Foster
1/3cup firmly packed light-brown sugar
1teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4cup unsalted butter
1/2cup créme de banana or other banana liqueur
1/2cup dark rum
4 bananas, peeled and halved lengthwise

Instructions

  1. Begin by making Bananas Foster. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon with a fork; set aside. Melt butter in a heavy-bottomed 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add cinnamon-sugar mixture; stir until sugar dissolves. Pour in banana liqueur and 1/4 c. of the rum. Cook, stirring, until syrupy and thickened, about 5 minutes. Add bananas, and lightly coat with the syrup. Add remaining 1/4 c. rum. Quickly swirl the pan, tilting toward the flame, to ignite the rum. (If you are using an electricstove, you will have to light the rum with a long match.) Swirl the pan, basting bananas with the sauce, until flame subsides. Remove pan from heat and set aside to keep warm.
  2. Make the Brioche French Toast. Combine the milk, cream, eggs, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium-sized bowl and whisk until eggs are well beaten and you havea smooth batter. Melt som butter on a flat griddle over medium heat.
  3. Dip the brioche slices in the egg batter, coating both sides. Allow excess batter to drip off. Place the battered breads on hot griddle. They should not be touching. You will most likely need to cook the bread in batches, depending on the size of the griddle. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, turning once, or until golden brown. Keep hot in a warm oven while you cook the remaining breads.
  4. To serve, place pieces of the French toast on each serving plate, stacked on top of each other. Place two of the banana halves on each serving and drizzle some of the pan sauce over the top. Top with a generous dollop of the whipped cream, then drizzle a bit of the maple syrup over the cream. Garnish each serving with a mint sprig. Serve at once.

Reprinted with permission from Don Strange of Texas: His Life and Recipes