The long holiday weekend is almost upon us and I’ve been pondering what to make. Company is outlawed and trips to get groceries have been few and far in between. Thankfully, strawberries are in season and I remembered a recipe from the days of yore… 2011. (Yup, “a little lunch” has been around that long.)
Feel free to peruse the archives in my side bar anytime.
The following is one of my favorites, re-edited. It’s almost the weekend ‘n’ all.
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Ever notice how breakfast tastes better on a weekend morning?
I’m not much of a breakfast-eater during the week, but on Saturday mornings I’m in the mood for something decadent — not your ordinary breakfast fare.
The solution to my decadent dreams was Strawberries & Cream Stuffed French Toast.
Filled with strawberries, sweetened mascarpone, cream cheese, and a hint of spice, it elevated plain ol’ French Toast into something extraordinary.
Quick to make, too — unless you happen to be out of Mascarpone cheese — in which case, you start the night before.
(Skip ahead to the Stuffed French Toast recipe if you have Mascarpone on hand.)
Homemade Mascarpone Cheese
(Adapted from two tarts’ recipe on Tasty Kitchen)
1 c. heavy cream
1/4 t. confectioners’ sugar
1/2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice
Whisk together heavy cream and confectioners’ sugar in a double boiler over simmering (not boiling) water. Using a wooden spoon, stir until it reaches 180° F. Add lemon juice and stir 5 minutes more; remove from heat.
Set top part of double boiler on a pot holder; let stand undisturbed for 20 minutes.
In the meantime, place a fine mesh sieve over a large bowl; line sieve with cheesecloth. (In a pinch, use a coffee filter — same principle.)
Slowly pour the cream mixture into the sieve; let stand 20 minutes or until cool enough to refrigerate. Wrap sieve (bowl and all) in plastic wrap and chill overnight.
In the morning, scrape the fresh Mascarpone cheese from the filter — it doesn’t stick — and discard the liquid in the bowl.
Prepare to be amazed.
I’ll never lack for Mascarpone cheese again. Or, Stuffed French Toast…
Strawberries & Cream Stuffed French Toast
6 slices French bread, approximately 2″ wide each
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 oz. Mascarpone cheese, softened (homemade or store-bought)
1 Tbsp. confectioners’ sugar, plus additional for serving
1 pint ripe strawberries (reserve some for garnish)
1 c. milk
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/4 t. freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
4 Tbsp. butter, divided
Create a pocket in each slice of bread by slicing through the middle without cutting through the crust; set aside.
Mix together softened cheeses and confectioners’ sugar until well blended.
Rinse and hull strawberries; pat dry and slice into 1/4″ slices.
Spread a generous portion of cheese mixture in each French bread pocket. Layer with sliced strawberries; set aside.
In a shallow dish, whisk together eggs, milk, sugar, spices, and salt.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter on a griddle over medium heat.
Meanwhile, dip each stuffed French toast into egg batter covering both sides; drain slightly.
Fry three pieces at a time. When underside is golden brown, flip over and fry until golden on both sides. Keep warm in a 250 degree oven until remaining pieces are cooked. (Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter to griddle before frying the rest.)
Serve with a dusting of confectioners’ sugar and garnish with whole strawberries.
This weekend treat your family (or yourself) to breakfast. You’ll be glad you did!
Remember to honor those who made it possible, too, xo.
Enjoying freedom and Stuffed French Toast,