Québecois French Toast

This rich Sunday breakfast dish was inspired by my recent trip to Montréal and the gorgeous strawberries and peaches I picked up at the Union Square Greenmarket. This recipe serves two (or one if you are really hungry).

Québecois French Toast

For the French toast:

  1. Two organic free-range eggs
  2. Two heaping tablespoons of Greek yogurt
  3. 3/4 cup of milk (I didn’t have any milk at home, so I used unsweetened soy milk instead)
  4. A splash of real vanilla extract
  5. A splash of Sortilège, a liqueur made out of maple syrup and Canadian whiskey (you can substitute with regular Canadian whiskey, bourbon, or dark rum)
  6. 1/4 teaspoon of fresh ground cinnamon
  7. A dash of salt
  8. One-third of a day old baguette (or substitute any crusty bread), cut diagonally into 3/4-inch (2 cm) slices (I get my baguettes from the Bouley Bakery in Tribeca
  9. Butter

Mix together ingredients 1 through 7. I do this in a blender, but you can whisk everything together in a bowl if you don’t have a blender.

Pour the mixture over the bread and let soak for 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the fruit and maple syrup topping.

For the fruit and maple syrup topping:

  1. A handful of small, juicy strawberries, trimmed of their stems and cut in half lengthwise
  2. One small white peach, pitted and chopped
  3. One heaping tablespoon of brown sugar (or raw sugar)
  4. Two tablespoons of maple syrup
  5. A splash of fresh lemon juice
  6. A splash of Sortilège

Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl and mix well.

When the bread has soaked up the batter and become soggy, melt a good amount of butter in a frying pan over medium heat. When the butter is melted and hot, fry the bread until browned on one side. Then flip and cook on the other side until golden brown.

Transfer the French toast to a plate. Pour the fruit and maple syrup topping into the frying pan (no need to wash the frying pan in between). Allow the residual heat of the frying pan to heat up the fruit and maple mixture and stir. Pour the mixture over the French toast and voilà, c’est fini!

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Montreal Tourism Campaign: “Lose The….”


I took this photo last night, by the ACE Canal Street station in Soho. Great campaign. Makes me want to go back to Montreal.

Back in NYC

I got in late last night on the train. The Amtrak train was 2 hours late both ways – going up to Montréal and coming back to NYC. I really support the idea of passenger rail travel, both for environmental reasons and just for the retro glamour and romance of it all, but Amtrak has a lot of room for improvement. Not only was the train late, but the café car ran out of food less than half-way into the trip. Not like there was much selection in the first place, just some sandwiches, burgers and hotdogs, reheated in a microwave. I really miss Japanese trains for their puntuality, customer service, and selection of good food – such as special, regional bento boxes known as “Ekiben” (駅弁).
Anyway, I was starving by the time I got home at 9:30 pm. So I dropped off my bags and went out again to pick up some takeout Pad Thai at Royal Siam, a Thai restaurant just around the corner from the apartment, and a bottle of Pabst Blue Ribbon (a very light, cheap American lager, but perfect with spicy food) at the corner bodega. I pigged out at home and I was quickly asleep.