French toast in one of those every now and then foods - if you go to a fancy hotel or at brunch with that friend you haven’t seen in a while. It’s a kind of instant happiness that can only been found in a gooey, carb filled breakfast-come-desert. It has always been one of my favourites, until I found out eggs were a key ingredient, losing its place in my life for a while. I recently discovered however, that eggs aren’t so vital after all, through conducting several experiments (some successful, some not so much) in hope to create the perfect vegan French toast.
2 large slices of sourdough
200ml almond milk
1 medium sized ripe banana
½ tsp vanilla paste
1 cup hazelnuts
1 tbsp cacao
¼ cup almond milk
1 tbsp coconut sugar
I’m pleased to report that this version is quite honestly to die for. It’s everything regular French toast is, and more. It’s soggy in the centre yet crispy on surface. It is oh-so comforting drowned in maple syrup, and better yet, stuffed with homemade vegan nutella. Making the nutella is super easy and once made, it’ll keep in a jar for a couple of weeks (if it lasts that long!). Blend the roasted hazelnuts, cacao powder, almond milk and coconut sugar in a blender until all the ingredients are combined and a think spread forms.
Now onto the French toast. Start by generously spreading the nutella onto two slices of thickly cut sourdough. Of course you can use any spread you like; almond butter, peanut butter – I just prefer this hazelnut cacao butter for this recipe. Once spread, stick the two slices together and soak in almond milk blended with the banana and the vanilla paste. Allow both slices of bread to fully soak up the liquid before placing in a hot non-stick pan. Feel free to use a little coconut oil, this helps ensure a crispy coating. Give the bread roughly 5 minutes before turning over to allow both sides to cook evenly.
The bread should have a nice golden brown colour on the outside and still be slightly soggy/ gooey in the inside. This texture combined with the nutella is heavenly. If you like it extra crispy, I recommend sprinkling a little coconut sugar on the surface of the bread whilst it is cooking. Get creative with toppings! Coconut yogurt, fresh fruit and melted chocolate are all delicious combinations. I’ve kept it simple and chopped up some fresh strawberries, cacao nibs and of course, maple syrup.