Matt and I haven't really had time for one of our lazy Sunday mornings, recently. I work full time, so my "weekend" is comprised of the two days I go to class, and Matt goes to school full time, so his "weekend" is comprised of the two days he spends at work. But the last time we had a day off together, I made us a breakfast (probably sometime around two pm) of what I now call French Toast with Amaretto Apples.
The basic idea behind it is your preferred French Toast with a variation of carmalized apples with brandy - not having any brandy on hand, I used amaretto, and it worked to my advantage. I'm afraid I don't have a terribly specific recipe for this. As Matt can tell you, cooking with me can be an occasionally frustrating experience, as I don't usually measure things unless I'm either cooking from a new recipe for the first time, or baking. I cook the way my parents do. How much do I add? Enough - the right amount. Until it tastes/looks/smells/feels right. So, the following is an appoximation of how I make my French Toast.
Serves twoish - may vary according to appetite.
For the toast:
2 thick slices of whatever leftover bread you have around (I used sourdough boule from a couple days previous, a whole wheat pain would be lovely - walnut bread, if that's your thing)
2 large splashes milk
1 capful vanilla extract (about 1/2 a teaspoon, maybe?)
a few generous shakes of ground cinnamon (anywhere from 1/4 to 1/2 tsp - I like cinnamon)
butter for the pan
In a large baking dish or shallow bowl (I use a 9x13x2 inch Pyrex), whisk the eggs with the milk, vanilla and cinnamon, and then add the bread and let sit, turning occasionally, until most of the egg mixture has been soaked up. In a cast iron pan over medium-high heat, melt enough butter to coat the bottom of the pan. When the butter is just sizzling, add the bread. You want it to start cooking on contact, so that it forms a nice crust. Let it fry without disturbing it until a nice goldeny brown crust forms, and then flip it and let the other side develop that same kind of crust and the bread cooks through.
When the bread is done, cover to keep warm.
For the apples:
1 large apple of your choice - something that cooks/bakes well. I used a Honeycrisp for this recipe - I love Honeycrisp. I would steer clear of Golden Delicious - they tend to go mushy. The amount of apple is negotiable - use more if you're an apple fan. I only had one apple left, otherwise I might have used two.
2 capfuls amaretto (3 tablespoonsish)
a sprinkling of sugar
a few more generous shakes of cinnamon
butter for the pan
Note: you should have the apples ready to go into the pan before you start the toast. If you have the kind of stove that can handle it (i.e. more than one large burner) you can start the apples after you flip the toast to its second side.
Core the apple, and then slice thinly. It should look like this when you're done:
Try not to eat too much of it before it goes into the pan.
Again, melt enough butter to generously coat the bottom of a cast iron pan over medium-high heat. Saute the apples until they are warm and wilting, then sprinkle with sugar to taste (depending on how sweet you like your fruit - keep in mind that the amaretto will sweeten it further), cinnamon to taste, and then add a couple of capfuls of amaretto. (Like I said, for me a couple of capfuls is approximately 3 tablespoons. Again, this is very however-much-you-want-at-the-time).
Turn the heat down if the apples are getting too soft, and let the amaretto reduce slightly, until it gets a little syrupy.
Put a slice of French Toast on each plate, and top with apples.
Good luck with your version.
Oh, and gratuitous kitty photo, because they were being cute while I was cooking: