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Lost Bread with Tomato Jam

August 11, 2012

This was in one of the summer’s Rachael Ray magazines. “Lost bread” is the literal English translation of the French “pain perdu.” You probably know it more commonly as french toast. This has some of the yummy parts of french toast mixed with the best of grilled cheese. Just a note, the jam is on the sweet side. If you don’t prefer that, simply cut back on the sugar. Alternatively you could add an arugula salad with lemon vinaigrette to cut the sweetness.

 


You will need:

  • 1 can (28-32 oz) peeled Italian tomatoes
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 shallot, grated
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 2 t balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 c hard Italian cheese, grated (I used a blend, but you could stick with just Parmigiano-Reggiano)
  • 1 1/2 c half and half (I used fat free)
  • 3 T flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 6 slices (1-inch thick) peasant bread (I used a sourdough boule)
  • 2 T olive oil

Then you will…

  1. In a large saucepan, bring the tomatoes (with juices) along with the sugar, basil, shallot, garlic and vinegar to a boil; season with salt and pepper. Lower the heat to medium and mash with a potato masher. Cook until thick and jamlike, about 20 minutes.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 275  degrees. Heat a griddle pan or cast-iron skillet over medium heat.
  3. In a large baking dish (I used a 9×13), whisk together the eggs, half-and-half and flour. Season with salt and pepper pepper.
  4. Soak the bread, 3 pieces at a time, in the egg mixture for a minute or two. Remove 1 piece at a time and press the bread into the shredded cheese. Transfer the bread to a plate.
  5. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to the griddle or skillet and add 3 pieces of bread. Cook, turning, until golden, 5 – 6 minutes. Store finished slices on a baking sheet in the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining olive oil and bread.
  6. Spread the savory toast with the tomato jam. If desired, top with an egg and serve with spinach or asparagus.
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