Chocolate and Mascarpone Challah French Toast
French toast: the quick and easy version of creating a vessel to receive butter and maple syrup. It’s the simpler pancake or waffle that doesn’t taste like it takes any less effort… unless of course you cheap out on the bread. If you use plain old white bread then it really does feel like it took less effort, a lot less. Use a better bread and although it took the same amount of time, the results are that much more noticeable and appreciated.
There are a few breads that seem like they were made for sweet French toast and as far as I’m concerned the king of these is Challah. Challah is an egg heavy, yet light and somewhat dry bread. All of those qualities perfect for flavor and absorption of your egg mix. It always comes whole, which means you can slice it as thick as you want and holds up well when soaked, great as plain French toast but of course, even better when you stuff it.
4 Slices Challah 1/2″ thick
1/2 Orange Zested
2 Tbs Sugar (Divided)
3-4oz Chocolate Bar
1/2 Cup Half & Half
There are really two ways to stuff French toast. One is to cut a pocket in a really thick slice and spoon a filling in. This is great if you’re working with fruits or pastry cream, but not so much for a soft cheese spread. The other way, which I do here, is to slice the bread fully and then use the stuffing to hold them back together. The cheese holds the chocolate in place and makes it one big slice again.
The stuffing is as easy as it looks. Mix the cheese, orange zest and sugar together and spread the mix evenly on one side of all of your bread. For the chocolate, I grated it on a box grater so that it would melt easier. It worked great and I would suggest that you do this as well. Sprinkle the grated chocolate over the cheese on one side and stick two slices together.
Whisk your eggs, cream and sugar together and heat a heavy pan on low. Dip your slices in the egg mix for about 30 seconds per side. Melt plenty of butter and fry the slices. While the slices are frying cover the pan with foil or a lid. Trapping the heat will help the chocolate and cheese melt together. Cook each side until they are nicely brown.
Cut the slice in two to make wedges and garnish with orange zest and powdered sugar. Syrup is optional with this sweet filling.