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Best Pain Perdu Recipes

Best Pain Perdu Recipes

Pain Perdu Shopping Tips

What’s the difference between brown and white eggs? Besides color, nothing – different breeds of chicken account for the differences in color – quality and freshness are what really count.

Pain Perdu Cooking Tips

In addition to keeping foods like granola, yogurt, and fruit on hand, plan ahead for hectic weekdays by whipping up extra batches of waffles or pancakes and individually freezing them for easy morning meals.


Pain Perdu with Fresh Strawberries (French Toast)

Pain perdu is the kind of dish Americans indulge in for breakfast, and the French indulge in for dessert. This custard-laden toast is an absolute dream with fresh strawberries and a drizzle of maple syrup.

Pain Perdu

Pain perdu literally translates to lost bread in English, which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense when you first learn of the translation. But if you dive a little deeper into the meaning behind it, pain perdu is a completely fitting name.

When you’re making pain perdu, you want to use day-old, slightly stale bread. In most scenarios, stale bread is tossed out, a “lost” ingredient.

With pain perdu, stale bread is not only saved but preferred. Using stale bread ensures the bread absorbs all of the delicious custard batter without becoming mushy.

Because you’ll definitely want to soak up as much of the scrumptious custard batter as you can. Made with a splash of orange liqueur and orange zest, the custard for pain perdu is fragrant and tantalizing in flavor.

Brioche

A variety of breads can be used to make pain perdu, but my personal favorite is brioche. Brioche is an enriched bread, made with butter, milk, and eggs.

Like other enriched breads (think challah bread), it’s also on the slightly sweeter side, which makes it perfect for a sweet recipe like this.

While the French will enjoy a slice of brioche with jam for breakfast, pain perdu is typically considered too indulgent for a morning meal. Instead, it’s served for dessert.

I tend to agree that such recipes are better left for dessert, but I do find myself craving this pain perdu on an occasional Sunday morning. What can I say? It’s the American in me.

I also love creating this dish for special brunches, like Mother’s Day brunch. My mom is a big fan of pain perdu, or French toast.

Fresh Strawberries

Like most custard desserts, pain perdu tastes wonderful with a variety of fruits. This is your chance to incorporate whatever is seasonally available and fresh for you.

Given that it’s spring right now, fresh strawberries are excellent with pain perdu. I just remove the stems from my strawberries and slice them up before garnishing my pain perdu with them.

A little bit of maple syrup and dusting of powdered sugar is all you need to make this pain perdu absolutely incredible.


Recipe Summary

  • 4 (1/2 inch) slices egg bread
  • 1 egg
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup milk
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract

Cut the bread and place on a wire rack to dry out a little as you prepare the batter.

Whisk the egg to blend. Melt 3 tablespoons of the butter in a saucepan or on the stovetop and allow to cool slightly. Whisk the sugar, salt and spices into the egg. When the butter has cooled slightly, slowly drizzle it in to the egg, whisking all the time. A little at a time, add the flour to the egg mixture to make a smooth thick paste. After it is all added, slowly blend in the milk and finally the vanilla. Whisk until just smooth and set aside.

Heat the remaining butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Dip a slice of the bread in the batter and allow to soak for 30 seconds, no more. Remove from the batter and allow the excess to drip off, back into the bowl. Place the battered slice in the skillet. Repeat with the remaining slices. Cook until golden on one side and then flip to brown the other. Serve immediately--a fresh squeeze of lemon juice and a good dusting of powdered sugar is traditional.


Recipe Summary

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 3 large garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Eight 1-inch-thick slices of soft white French or Italian bread
  • Unsalted butter, for brushing

In a large baking dish, beat the eggs with the milk, garlic, salt, thyme and pepper. Add half of the bread and let soak for 5 minutes, turning once.

Meanwhile, preheat a cast-iron griddle or skillet over moderately high heat brush with butter. Remove the bread from the egg mixture, allowing the excess to drip off. Add the soaked bread to the griddle and cook, turning once, until golden and cooked through, 4 minutes. Transfer to a platter keep warm. Butter the griddle again and repeat with the remaining bread.


How to Make French Toast 3 Ways

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French toast or “pain perdu” as it’s known in France, is probably the best invention ever. As real french people (well one of us is), we felt the need to show you what was the best pain perdu of all time (and also the easiest).

We chose to do a “normal” recipe the old-fashioned way (à l’ancienne) for those of you that want to embrace the full french experience, along with a vegan alternative for the radical ones out there.

I know the words “vegan” and “french” are very difficult to imagine together, but Layla is living proof that they can coexist. We decided to challenge the traditional french cuisine by comparing the classic french toast with a plant-based one. We also included our easy and vegan strawberry-banana coulis recipe that can be topped on the french toast. Of course, you’re free to substitute with any fruits you like or enjoy it plain – either way you’ll feel totally fancy and totally french.

While the traditional version of the french toast remains a great childhood memory, and an amazing comfort food in times of need, the vegan alternative is pretty good. It has a rather pleasant caramelized taste, feels lighter and healthier. Check out the recipes below and you be the verdict of which Pain Perdu stacks on top.


The ingredients are simple and chances are you have all of them already on hand. You'll need eggs, milk, sugar, salt, vanilla extract and I like to add a little orange zest, although it won't make it or break, just a good add-on if you have it!

Then all you have to do is whisk it up in a shallow bowl. This will make it easier to place several pieces of bread to soak at one time.

When soaking the bread be sure to give it time to soak up the liquid. Stale baguettes can be dense and you want to make sure the liquid has a chance to travel up through the bread to make it softer once cooked.

Then you allow it to cook on both sides in a non-stick skillet with sizzling butter until the egg is cooked through. Be sure you give it enough time to cook off the raw egg. About 2-3 minutes per side. Once you've achieved a nice golden brown color, you can turn down the heat to avoid over-browning.

It's also important to cook on all sides so that if any raw egg spilled out the tops and bottoms it will be cooked off too.

This will also create some nice color on the top of the bread and give it a nice crunch was it's done. You can serve it with butter and jam, or more orange zest and a drizzle of warm maple syrup.

So next time you're entertaining and don't get through a whole baguette, pop those slices in the freezer until you can make pain perdu, it's a fantastic little breakfast treat!


The Pain d’Épices Recipe By Philippe Conticini

Here is the best pain d’épices recipe by French chef Philippe Conticini. French pain d’épices often gets mistranslated into English as “gingerbread,” but the two cakes bear little resemblance to one another. Indeed, while the flavor of American gingerbread is dominated by molasses and the eponymous ginger, pain d’épices features rye flour, anise seed, and honey.

There are as many variations of the recipe for pain d’épices as there are regions in France. But traditionally the French pain d’épices is made with honey, rye, or wheat flour (depending on the region) and spices such as cardamom, anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. It is usually baked into a loaf and served with savory dishes. On the Holidays, the pain d’épices is served with foie gras or with gourmet cheeses like brie or camembert. However, it is also often incorporated into or served alongside classic French desserts.

In order to bake the perfect French pain d’épices, here are a few tips:

  • As honey’s aroma will dominate the taste of the bread, choose the variety of honey carefully.
  • Make sure to keep an eye on the baking time as if over-baked, the pain d’épices will be dry.
  • Prefer to use freshly ground spices instead of pre-ground. Indeed, freshly ground spices are so much more fragrant and keep their flavor better even after baked.
  • Finally, in order to make the pain d’épices look brighter, you can cover it with syrup on top, such as an orange glaze.

Here is below one of my favorite pain d’épices recipes by the French chef Philippe Conticini. This recipe is super easy and very quick to make. There are no special ingredients or appliances necessary, no need to wait for the dough to rise, and requires no kneading. I hope you’ll enjoy this easy and very tasteful recipe!


Classic Pain de Mie

All crumb, with little crust. I know this might not be the idea you have of a classic French bread, but it is the best way to describe this Pain de mie, which is a delicious French household staple in France.

Now the truth is, while growing up in France, I was not particularly fond of this style of bread. Pain de Mie is sold in every French supermarket and grocery store, sliced and packaged. And seeing these industrial-like, pre-packaged and sliced soft white breads is a vision that never really appealed to me (I much preferred a trip to my neighborhood bakery for a freshly baked, crusty baguette).

But this recipe (which I started to make just a few weeks ago) definitly reconciled my relationship with Pain de Mie. In fact, it made me fall in love with it.

“Mie” means crumb in French. And indeed, this “Bread of the Crumb” title calls attention to the almost-absent crust on this bread, and its particularly tight crumb – which contrasts with the crunchy crusts and airy crumbs you find in most French breads, such as baguettes, boules and rustic loaves.

As I mentioned, Pain de Mie is sold in every French supermarket and grocery store, sliced and packaged. If you sneak into the cupboards of any given French kicthen (in any region of France), chances are you will find a package or two of this Pain de Mie. It is beloved for its mild taste and soft and creamy texture, which makes it very versatile and perfect for breakfast toasts, sandwiches, fancy french toasts, canapes or even soup croutons. Its original square shape also makes it ideal for preparing a cheesy croque-monsieur or a croque-madame (which is the same as a croque-monsieur, but with an egg on top!).

It is also particularly enjoyed by French housewives, because it keeps fresher longer than French-bakery breads, owing to the fat in it (from the oil and milk), which other French breads usually lack. It keeps very well inside its package, for up to a week, and freezes well too.

This recipe is so simple yet great. It gives you the same softness and creaminess as any store-bought French Pain de Mie, but with a much fresher taste of course. We’ve been making a loaf of pain de mie every weekend, lately. We prepare the dough on Friday night, let it sit overnight and bake it on Saturday morning. My husband uses it to make sandwiches and to accompany our Sunday stews. And I love it for making French Toast.

Needless to say the loaf is usually all gone by Sunday night (and if any is left, we simply freeze it!).

Cooking notes:

  • For optimum proportions, this recipe requires a scale.
  • Pain de Mie is traditionally baked in a lidded Pullman bread pan. The lid constrains the expansion of the the dough and ensures a tighter crumb and perfect square shape. Because I do not have a Pullman pan, I have been making my pain de mie in a regular loaf pan (with no lid). And I am happy to say, although the top has some room to rise and crack, this recipe still produces a very tight and creamy crumb, with a paper-thin soft crust.
  • This recipe is very easy to make, and you do not require a stand mixer. Although you can use one if you wish.
  • The dough should be prepared the day before, and be allowed to sit overnight in a fridge. This creates a slow rise, with a lot more flavour!

If you try this Classic Pain de mie, let me know! Leave a comment or share a photo using #pardonyourfrench on Instagram.


  1. In a large bowl, whisk the cream with the sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and egg yolks until the custard is smooth.
  2. Place 2 slices brioche in the custard, holding them in the custard for 20 seconds a side to ensure they are completely soaked through.
  3. In a large nonstick skillet or electric griddle, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Remove the bread from the custard, add to the pan, and cook, flipping once, until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer the pain perdu to a serving platter and repeat with the remaining butter, brioche, and custard.
  4. Dust the pain perdu with confectioners’ sugar before serving.

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How to make pain perdu like a New Orleans native

“Pain Perdu” means “lost bread,” which in this case is from a loaf of French bread. (Typing a pronunciation is a little difficult to spell out other than “pan” has a short “a” like in “bran” but you come off the “n” pretty quickly. Perdu – first syllable is like the first in berry, and second syllable is the strong emphasis, “dew.” I’m sure that explains it.)

My son loves this French toast, so I nearly always make it when he visits. It’s crunchy on the outside and soft, custardy inside. Top with a little butter and powered sugar and add some fresh sliced strawberries – ooh, la la!

  • griddle (electric or stovetop),
  • medium bowl
  • shallow casserole dish
  • whisk
  • microplane
  • measuring equipment
  • spatula
  • baking sheet
  • parchment paper
  • cutting board
  • bread knife

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup cream
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 8 thick slices of day old French bread (staler bread is fine as long as you can slice it)
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • powdered sugar (optional)

In your mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add eggs and whisk into creamy paste.

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

Slowly add milk and cream, whisking until lumps are gone.

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

On your cutting board, slice bread on the diagonal for larger pieces about 1 1/2 thick. Cut 4 pieces per person. This much custard mixture probably is enough for at least 4-6 servings of this size.

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

In your shallow casserole dish, pour custard about 1/2 inch deep. Place bread slices into mixture and let it soak up liquid for 3-4 minutes. Turn and soak for another 3-4 minutes. Use a fork to “feel” if the liquid’s soaked well. Repeat flip, if you think it needs more liquid.

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

With your spatula, place each slice onto a parchment paper lined baking dish to continue absorption about 15 minutes.

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

Heat your griddle. When it’s ready, stick a fork into a 1/2 inch slice of cold butter and drag it around to grease the griddle. Place your custard-bread slices onto your griddle with about an inch in between. Grill on medium-high heat about 5 minutes until a nice brown crust has formed. Flip the slices and grill another 5 minutes. That ought to make the slices crusty and cook the custard through the center. (If you want to keep the slices warm until you can serve everybody, heat oven to 200 degrees, put a wire rack on top of a baking dish and hold slices there until they’re all cooked.)

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)

Place crusty slices on your plate. Add a little more butter on top, if you like, and scatter powdered sugar over the top, along with strawberries. Some folks like syrup on top like pancakes. Whatever your top them with, expect the result to be yummy.

how to cook pain perdu like a New Orleans native (photo by Patsy R. Brumfield/The Southfacin’ Cook)


Watch the video: Έξι συμβουλές που θα σε βοηθήσουν να ενωθείς με τον Θεό και να λάβεις ότι ζητάς στην προσευχή σου (November 2021).