Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Wentelteefjes (French toast)

I don't know what to do! I have whole lists of recipes I'd love to share, but just yesterday I realized there's seven weeks left till Christmas. SEVEN?! Which means I can only share seven recipes and there is no way that I can travel the whole world full of traditional Christmas recipes in just a few weeks. My big plan suddenly seems doomed to fail.. But most importantly, I don't feel Christmas yet. I'm caught up in my research, school projects and classes. We still need to celebrate Saint Nicolas (5 December) first before we can start thinking about Christmas!

So while I'm debating and stressing and wondering what to do with this horrible life-threatening problem, I still figured a recipe to share. In Holland it's a traditional way to use up old bread. But many more countries have their (also traditional) own version of this way too easy recipe!


When I think of recipes as traditional, I always have to do a bit of background on how traditional exactly the recipe is. And how much more traditional I can make it. You won't notice by my post, but sometimes theres hours of working trying to find the right ingredients or the little bit of history I wanted to know. For this recipe the exact history seems to be unknown. The idea was to use up old bread in a creative way and this idea has spread throughout the whole world (at least the parts that eat bread). The interesting part is the names people have thought up for it. The dutch word wentelteefje supposedly translates to 'turning it quickly'. Another few creative names: from Belgium the verloren of gewonnen brood (the lost or found bread) or the French pain perdu (lost bread). Or even more brilliant: the German Arme Ritter (poor knight). Or the less creative ones: the American French toast or the Spanish torrija (toast), the Greek γαλλικό τοστ (French toast). And then theres a whole lot of funny pronounciations for the same 'french toast'.

French toast (Wentelteefjes)
makes 10-20 slices- inspired by Grootmoeders Grote Keukenboek

3 eggs
30 grams sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
100 ml milk 
Butter
10 slices of (old) bread

1. Lightly whisk the eggs with the sugar. Add the cinnamon and the milk and whisk until you have an even mixture.
2. Melt a bit of butter in a pan. Dip one of the slices of bread into the egg-mixture and into the pan. Fry for a few minutes until golden brown (or starting to burn) on both sides. Serve immediately!

Because it's so simple to make, this recipe just begs for creativity. Think of adding fruits, a bit of cream and cutting them into triangles for a fancy brunch. Or how about turning them savory with a bit of cheese on top and bit of pepper and leek through the egg? Or think of a Christmas dessert: serve with whipped cream and warm cherries. How about a simple breakfast: adding some nutella/chocolate chips and banana? Really the possibilities for varying shapes, taste and accompaniments is endless!

Lastly, I'm really curious about what you think: should I start posting Christmas recipes? Or stick to other things until December? And more importantly: what Christmas traditions do you want to see? Any countries that spring to mind?

10 comments:

  1. Oooo yum! What a great idea. I haven't had French toast in way too long :)

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    1. Hehe, thank you so much Cass! Hope you get a chance to make it again soon!

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  2. How is it possible that I love French toast but always forget to make it?! Thanks for a good reminder to make breakfast more interesting tomorrow! And good luck with your huge Christmas recipe dilemma. :)

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    1. Thank you so much Elizabeth! :) And I totally know that problem! French toast is so good and easy too, but I always forget it exists.. Somehow I end up making the more complicated stuff, like cheesecake with ricotta and orange, or pumpkin muffins with chocolate, caramel and dates.. Maybe it's because there's so many good things to try, I can't afford making the same thing twice? ;)

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  3. I never think of making french toast and I don't know why - it's so good and so simple to make! Got to remedy that soon because yours looks so delicious!

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    1. I have the exact same problem! Except for that last part. Haha, you really think it looks delicious? I think it looks like french toast, which is horribly hard to turn into something fancy for a picture.. :P

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  4. I always love your background stories about the traditions and history of foods - I think I would have loved being a food anthropologist! I had no idea French Toast has so many names and guises! "Poor Knight" is for sure the winner, though! Another great post!!! :D

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    1. I never heard of a food anthropologist! O-O This sounds like something I'm going to have to look into..
      Poor Knight does sound brilliant does it? "Children, we're eating Poor Knights tonight, what do you think?"

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  5. Good morning, how is the weather in Utrecht today? I went their about a year ago and loved it! I´m a huge fan of french toast and I love this version with cinnamon sugar.. perfect for the weather we have here today! Xx

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    1. The weather is horrible! You know, it's autumn, although with the freeze now I feel it's definitely winter already.. We get lots of rain and lots of wind and lots of grey sky.. Perfect for something with cinnamon! Although I really hope you have better weather that is also perfect for french toast!

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