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You Asked For It: Stuffed French Toast

I would like to try making stuffed French toast and am hoping some readers may have recipes for me to try. Thank you. Bill Gray, Dunedin

Sometimes you find a recipe that is a keeper. Stuffed French Toast from Geri Brizzi of St. Petersburg is one of those recipes. It's delicious, with just enough flavor, and very easy to make. Sprinkle some powdered sugar and chopped or whole pecans for a garnish and you have a very impressive dish. If you have a recipe for berry sauce, that would be a nice change from maple syrup.

The Strawberry Cheesecake French Toast from Pat Puka of Tarpon Springs is a bit more involved though still fairly simple to master after a few tries. This recipe uses ricotta cheese rather than cream cheese. I used frozen strawberries and actually heated the syrup or juice that comes in the package to pour over the French toast, in addition to a bit of maple syrup. This recipe could easily be made with other types of frozen fruits. This dish also makes a nice presentation.

When soaking the pieces, I did not make the "sandwich" before soaking as called for. When I did, I sometimes lost the bottom because it was slippery. I soaked each side individually, put the cheese side on the griddle first, egg side down, and then topped it with the second piece of bread, egg side up. Don't go by a timer for this recipe as each griddle will heat differently. Check the color after a minute or two and judge from there. I worked over a medium heat with no problem.

Recipe requests

Jackie Ryckman of Oldsmar enjoyed the creamed spinach at the Dana Point Chart House restaurant in California. Jackie says it's out of this world. She has tried unsuccessfully to obtain the recipe and hopes someone may have it. Phyllis Clifford of St. Petersburg recently read in Sue Carlton's column in the St. Petersburg Times about a dish called Johnny Marzetti. Her mother used to make it and she hopes someone somewhere can help her get it back. She would appreciate it very much.

Recipes tested by Times correspondent Ellen Folkman unless otherwise noted. Send requests to You Asked For It, St. Petersburg Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or e-mail youaskedforit@tampabay.rr.com. Include your name, city and phone number.

>>easy

Stuffed French Toast

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

2 tablespoons maple syrup

¼ cup chopped pecans

1 loaf unsliced French bread

3 eggs

¼ cup milk

Mix cream cheese and maple syrup until blended. Stir in pecans. Cut bread into 1-inch-thick slices. From the top, slice a "pocket" part of the way into each piece of bread. Fill each pocket with heaping tablespoon of cream cheese mixture. Whisk eggs with milk together. Dip stuffed bread slices into egg mixture and fry on each side until golden brown. Top with maple syrup or berry sauce.

Source: Geri Brizzi, St. Petersburg



>>moderate

Strawberry Cheesecake French Toast

8 ounces ricotta cheese

3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

16 slices French bread, ½ inch thick

2 eggs

1 cup milk

2 cups sliced fresh or frozen strawberries

Additional confectioners' sugar or maple syrup

In a small bowl, combine ricotta, sugar and vanilla; mix well. Spread 2 tablespoons each on eight slices of bread; cover with remaining bread. In a bowl, beat eggs and milk. Soak sandwiches for 1 to 2 minutes per side. Cook on hot greased griddle for 5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and heated through. Serve with strawberries. Top with confectioners' sugar or maple syrup.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Times testing note: Rather than make the sandwich, we had better luck soaking each side individually, putting the cheese side on the griddle first, egg side down, and then topping it with the second piece of bread, egg side up.

Source: Pat Puka, Tarpon Springs

You Asked For It: Stuffed French Toast 01/27/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 27, 2009 3:30am]
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