Why have Plain Jane French Toast when you can have Fancy Pants cheese stuffed French Toast? A little creamy cheese and cinnamon ginger apples can transform your breakfast into a 10-year old’s dream breakfast.
French Toast Ingredients:
BREAD (sliced, stale)
1½ cups MILK
BUTTER for frying, and apples
APPLES (peeled, sliced)
CANDIED GINGER (sliced)
8 oz CREAM CHEESE (soft)
15 oz RICOTTA CHEESE
CINNAMON (to taste)
optional: sugar and vanilla
French Toast Directions:
Stale bread makes great French toast, so slicing bread ahead of time is a great idea; at least a few hours ahead of time, but ideally overnight. Stale bread will soak up the French toast batter without becoming overly soggy and falling apart, especially if you’re using thinner slices of bread, and the thinner or thicker the slices will depend on your particular tastes. This French toast recipe doesn’t need thicker slices, since you’re basically building a French toast sandwich; I’m using thicker slices of challa bread for this video, but I often use regular slices of Hawaiian sweet bread, which works great.
Mix the cream cheese and ricotta cheese together. Be sure to set your cream cheese out ahead of time to soften, this will make mixing it with the ricotta cheese much easier. I’ll often mix these ingredients ahead of time. If making a smaller amount, the cheese mix is about a 2 to 1 ratio of ricotta to cream cheese. I sometimes add a tsp. or two of sugar to the cheese mix, but this is optional; I prefer it without the added sugar, since the apple mix will be quite sweet.
Any leftover cream/ricotta mix can be used as dessert topping, and makes a tasty filling for omelets. I generally make too much apple mix, but that’s a good thing, too. I’m generous with the apple topping, and any leftover apple mix is a perfect topping for oatmeal or ice cream.
To make the apple mix, peel, slice, and remove the cores of the apples. Apples vary quite a bit in size, but I usually end up with about 4-6 cups of apple slices, and I generally use gala or Fuji apples, which take little time to cook down.
Melt about 2 Tbsp of butter in a pot and add apples. Mix with butter and cook over medium heat. Add candied ginger slices; I think ½ to 1 cup is a good amount of candied ginger, but there is no wrong amount, follow your gut. Add 1-2 Tbsp of sugar and cinnamon to taste, Mix and cover and cook about 20 minutes, until apples soften and get juicy. For extra liquidy goodness, stir in about ¼ cup water. You want the apples to be a little syrupy, that way you won’t have to use any maple syrup with the French toast. Once the apples are cooked to your liking, cover and set aside.
Mix the French toast batter. A basic batter is eggs and milk, and I’m also adding cinnamon, but often folks will add a little sugar or vanilla extract. I don’t add vanilla or sugar to the batter with this particular dish, because the creamy cheese center and apple-ginger topping will add more than enough flavor. In a bowl, combine the milk, eggs, and cinnamon to taste (½ tsp is a good amount). Whisk together well and then pour some into a shallow bowl–or all–it depend on the size of your shallow bowl; you don’t want the batter to be so deep that it runs into the cheesy part of your French toast sandwich.
To build the French toast sandwich, simply spread the cheese mixture onto a slice of bread and top with another slice, making a basic cheese sandwich.
You can also add toasted walnuts into the sandwich for a nice crunch, or simply top the toast later with toasted nuts, but definitely add nuts at some point, cause the crunchy contrast makes the dish perfect, and toasted walnuts are awesome.
To toast the walnuts: spread walnuts on a baking sheet and roast at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 5-7 minutes. It won’t take long. As soon as the nuts begin to color up, remove them from the oven; they will burn if ignored, so set a timer and watch them closely. Taking the time to toast the walnuts is well worth the effort…it’s a great taste.
Once you’ve constructed the cheesy French toast sandwich, heat a little butter in a non-stick skillet on medium heat.
Place the sandwich in the batter and let soak a moment and then turn and batter the other side.
Place sandwich in the skillet and cook on medium heat until golden brown, turn and cook other side and remove from the heat.
Slice French toast and then top with apples and walnuts (a dusting of powdered sugar is optional). For a splash of color, add fresh berries or mint.
Serve this cheese stuffed French toast with maple syrup, or without–I find the cooked apples to be syrupy enough, and the warm cheesy center keeps the French toast from being too dry.
It’s a super delicious dish and a great treat for company.
Give this fancy pants Cream Cheese French Toast recipe a try and let me know what you think, and bon appétit!
And for another fancy pants breakfast dish, try this Pancake Recipe.