Apple French Toast with Caramel Sauce & Crème
Everyone loves French toast, right? Well, today I’ve got something special for you. Seasonal apples, sweet caramel sauce, and delicious vanilla cream, make it perfect for a lazy fall morning, holiday brunch or any time of the year you are looking for something extra special for a breakfast treat. Enjoy!
For the toast
⅔ cup whole milk
⅔ cup heavy cream
½ cup sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
⅓ vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped (if you don’t have vanilla bean, take vanilla extract)
4 (1-inch-thick) slices brioche or any bread you like, preferably day-old
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
2 big seasonal apples, peeled, cored, and cut into eighths
For caramel sauce
1 cup sugar
⅓ cup heavy cream, at room temperature
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, preferably cultured, at room temperature
For vanilla crème
1 cup whole milk
½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped
3 large egg yolks
⅓ cup sugar
Whisk together the milk, cream, sugar, egg, yolk, and vanilla bean seeds until the sugar dissolves.
Arrange the bread slices in a single layer in a shallow baking dish. Pour the milk-egg mixture over the bread, submerging the bread. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the bread is completely soaked and almost too soft to handle, about 15 min.
Step 2. Preparing the apples. When you’re almost ready to serve, preheat the oven to 400°F. Generously butter a small rimmed baking sheet. Arrange the apples in a single layer. Dot the apples with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Roast until golden brown and tender, about 10 minutes.
Step 3. Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a large ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. When the butter foams, use both hands to very carefully transfer the soaked bread slices to the pan. Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes, then carefully flip. Transfer to the oven and bake alongside the apples until golden brown and puffed, about 5 minutes.
Serve the French toast with the apples and vanilla crème and caramel, if desired. Dust with brown sugar. Bon Appétit!
Put the sugar in a large saucepan. Add just enough water to dampen it. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until the sugar dissolves. Continue cooking until amber, swirling the pan occasionally.
Remove from the heat and stir in the cream—be careful, the mixture will bubble up—and then the butter. Continue stirring until the mixture is well blended. Let cool to room temperature. The sauce can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 days.
Whisk together the milk and vanilla seeds and pod in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat until bubbles just begin to form around the edges.
Meanwhile, rapidly whisk together the yolks and sugar in a medium bowl until the sugar dissolves and the mixture becomes pale yellow.
Continue whisking rapidly and add a few spoonfuls of the just-boiling milk mixture to temper the yolks. Remove the milk mixture from the heat and whisk in the yolk mixture in a steady stream. Set the saucepan over medium-low heat and whisk rapidly until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 7 minutes. When you run your finger across a spoon dipped into the sauce, it should leave a clear line.
Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl. Set the bowl on top of a larger bowl of ice and water to stop the mixture from cooking. Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally. The sauce can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 days.