French toast

French Toast: Solution for day-old sourdough

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By Tiffany Young
I’m trying to be more mindful of wasting food. As someone generally cooking for one, this is difficult to do. I typically go to the grocery store once or twice a week and try not to buy too much, but inevitably, I’ll think I’m going to eat dinner at home most nights per week and then end up being home about once during the week. This means I definitely can’t get carried away buying all the fruits and veggies I want. It also bothers me when I end up with a can or a 1/2 cup of something random that sits on the shelf for months upon months. For this reason, I’m trying to evaluate what food I have in the house on Sundays and determine what needs to be used and what items I should buy at the store to go with what I already have.

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That being said, this week I had almost a loaf of sourdough left on Sunday and it was the “baked fresh” bread from the bakery–i.e. no preservatives, i.e. gonna go bad if I don’t use it pronto. I thought about ways to use it up quickly and came up with either 1) croutons or 2) French toast (my helper here is one of the tested toasters at Jane’s Kitchen). And with my sweet tooth, you know which one I was leaning toward.

And that’s how I came to make a lot of French toast this morning. So much, in fact, I’m freezing some and planning on taking some into work a few days this week to heat up for breakfast.

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For the recipe, which promises (and delivers) crispy, not soggy, French Toast, visit Sweet Pea’s Kitchen. I subbed coconut milk for the milk and completely didn’t see it called for brown sugar until just now, but it worked out all the same. I’ve never done this before, but they have you bake the bread for 8 minutes on each side to keep the bread from getting too soggy when you dip it in the egg mixture. Also, I thought it was brilliant that they have you keep all the toast in the oven after you’ve put it on the griddle so that you can serve it all warm. I’m going to have to tell my parents about this! We always just eat pancakes and French toast one at a time when it’s ready so that it doesn’t get cold, but this way makes way more sense! It sucks to be the one cooking and watching everyone else eat while you’re still flipping food.

I will say French toast takes a lot longer to make than I had thought–You have to cook each slice of bread 3-4 minutes per side, with about 10 slices of bread puts you at 30-40 minutes, not to mention the pre-toasting time. Luckily it tasted so yummy I didn’t mind, and hopefully the grab-n-go breakfasts may save me some time in the mornings.

Feels like a Falliday

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By Tiffany Young

Usually people talk about new beginnings in the spring, but here in Texas, it’s always the fall that feels like a fresh start to me. Probably because our summers are so long and hot that we’re not sure we’re going to make it, and then the temperature drops 30 degrees and we feel like we can breathe again.

When I feel like starting over, I start going through my things to see what I can get rid of and start buying things that seem to fit me better. Often I’ll start cooking again and trying new things. It’s like a fresh outlook.

The past few weeks I’ve been editing my closet (things in colors I never where or seem to hang funny on me) and seeing what I might be missing (shoes, turtlenecks).

I’ve also been trying fall recipes, even though it’s not that cold.

Today,  I tried a Pumpkin French Toast recipe, adapted from Minimalist Baker: http://minimalistbaker.com/pumpkin-french-toast-bake/. It was good, but not as good as the carrot cake recipe I made from Flourish (or from King Arthur’s Flour). But really I changed up so many things in my carrot cake recipe it’s something totally different (but amazing) by now. Here’s the recipe: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/blog/2010/03/07/warning-everything-but-the-kitchen-sink-carrot-cake-is-not-for-purists/. If you happen to run out of carrots, add some pumpkin puree to make up the amount—it’s terrific.

Anyway, like I’ve said, fall is for starting over and maybe life is like the carrot cake (sorry pumpkin French toast, but you’ve been trumped). You add all kinds of things to the cake and when you run out of something, you just throw something else into the mix and you’re not sure it’ll turn out, but it does. And it’s delicious. So, here’s to just throwing all sorts of new things into your life and seeing how it works out. And if you get halfway through making cream cheese frosting before realizing you’re out of powdered sugar, so be it. Life is sweet enough!