Feta Cheese French Toast with Spiced Honey Syrup

5.0
(1)

This does sound kind of crazy and to be honest, when I first tried it, I didn't think it would work, but oh, does it work well. It's one of the best French toasts I've ever had, especially with the spiced honey syrup we're going to serve it with, which was just an absolute perfect pairing. 

1
Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
20 mins
Additional Time:
2 hrs
Total Time:
2 hrs 40 mins
Servings:
2
Yield:
2 servings

Behold, The Magic of Caramelized Cheese

After posting a tease picture for this Feta Cheese French Toast on social media, I received a fair number of responses questioning this particular pairing, as well as my general sanity. Well, if making French toast with feta cheese is crazy, I don't want to be sane, since this was one of the most delicious things I've had for breakfast in a very long time.

I believe what's giving the skeptics pause is assuming the feta is going to taste like it does in its raw form, which is generally quite briny, with that signature hint of funkiness, but that's not what we're going to taste in the final product. When you crisp and caramelize chunks of feta in a hot pan, especially when it's attached to a custard soaked slice of bread, it turns into a completely different substance. A sweeter, milder, absolutely delicious substance.

So, if you're worried about this feta tasting like the feta you had in that Greek salad, then please relax. Not only does the browning of the cheese convert it into something new and wonderful, but it also creates something that pairs perfectly with honey. Truly, a match made in alternative French toast heaven. Having said that, this also would work with maple syrup, or any number of fruit sauces. No matter how you serve yours, I really do hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 4 (1 inch thick) slices stale French bread

  • 4 ounces feta cheese, sliced

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

For the Batter:

  • 2 large eggs

  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 ½ teaspoons white sugar

  • teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 pinch ground cinnamon

  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper

  • cup heavy cream

For the Honey Syrup:

  • ¼ cup honey

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • ¼ teaspoon Aleppo pepper flakes, or to taste

  • 1 pinch kosher salt

Directions

  1. Place stale bread in a shallow dish just large enough to tightly fit the slices in one layer.

  2. Whisk eggs, salt, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, cayenne, and heavy cream for batter together in a bowl and pour over bread slices. Use tongs to toss to coat evenly. If there's excess batter pooling at the bottom of the dish, spoon it over the top of the bread slices.

  3. Wrap and refrigerate until bread has absorbed all the batter or is fully saturated, 2 to 12 hours.

  4. To make the honey syrup, combine honey, water, chili flakes, and salt in a small saucepan and place over medium heat. Stir and bring to a simmer, then cook for 30 seconds. Turn off the heat and reserve until needed.

  5. Remove bread from the refrigerator and press sliced feta into the top of each piece; about 2 tablespoons feta should almost cover the surface of each piece.

  6. Heat butter and olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Place in the bread, cheese-side down. Cook until the cheese has caramelized and the surface is well browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Turn the slices over, reduce heat to medium, and cook the other side until golden brown.

  7. Serve immediately with the honey syrup spooned over top.

    Feta Cheese French Toast
    Chef John

Chef's Notes:

Large batches of bread can be layered in a deeper dish or pan and soaked with the batter.

You can use milk for cream, if preferred. I used French feta cheese for this (which is more mild) but use whichever type you prefer.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

953 Calories
52g Fat
99g Carbs
27g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 2
Calories 953
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 52g 67%
Saturated Fat 28g 140%
Cholesterol 321mg 107%
Sodium 1812mg 79%
Total Carbohydrate 99g 36%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Protein 27g
Potassium 297mg 6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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