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Rabanadas ❦ Portuguese French Toast

Wheather we call them rabanadas, fatias douradas or fatias partidas, the taste is still the same. Yummy, golden slices of heaven, fried to perfection, tossed in cinnamon sugar and topped with a boozy, honey and Port wine, infused syrup.

Unlike their breakfast cousins, they usually only make an appearance at Christmas and Easter. I am sure you will agree, they are delicious anytime. Carlos helped me make them this year, which is always nice. I love when my husband cooks with me. So grab your favourite human and get cooking.

You can leave out the Port wine and just make the simple syrup.

Rabanadas ❦ Portuguese French Toast

Makes about 12, 2cm. thick pieces

1 French baguette style bread. Day old, must be older to hold shape while frying, unlike fresh.

400 ml. Milk, Whole, semi-skim or skim are fine

4-5 Eggs, large, start with 4, add more as needed

1 Cinnamon stick

1 Lemon peel, in large strips

2 tbsp. Vanilla extract, optional

Vegetable oil to fry

To finish:

150 g. Sugar, castor/ granulated

50 g. Cinnamon, ground

For the syrup to serve:

1 cup Sugar

1 cup Water

100 ml. Port wine, optional

1 Cinnamon stick

1 Lemon peel, in large strips

4 Tbsp. Honey

1. In a small saucepan, on low heat. Scald milk with cinnamon stick, lemon peel and vanilla extract. Keep warm

2. In a small bowl, beat eggs

3. In a large bowl, mix sugar and cinnamon, toss to combine

3. Cut 2 cm. slices of baguette, depending on length of your bread about 12.

4. In a wide shallow frying pan, heat oil on medium high heat

5. Take one piece of bread and dip in the warm milk, turning quickly until saturated. Immediatley pass through beaten egg, coating thoroughly. Add to oil. Fry about 4-6 slices at a time.

Fry 3-4 minutes per side, turning once, or until a rich golden colour is achieved.

6. With a slotted spoon, lift from oil and immediately toss in cinnamon sugar mixture. Arrange on platter. Repeating process until all slices are fried.

To serve, prepare syrup above, with or without Port wine. Pass the warmed syrup around the table so guests can drizzle, as much or as little as they would like, atop thier slices.

You can also skip the syrup altogether, as they are just as delicious on thier own. They are usually served cold but you can gently reheat by placing them in a pre-heated oven, at 180°c. for about 10 minutes.

For the syrup:

Heat all the ingredients in a small saucepan to reduce and thicken to a syrup consistency, about 20minutes on low/medium heat. Can be made ahead and gently reheated just before serving.

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