I think the belated birthday brunch I made for my mom a couple weekends ago spoiled me a little, because I found myself craving something sweet and elaborate once again. I actually made this recipe last weekend as a possible Mother’s Day brunch experiment for me mum (we’ll see if I use it; I have a ZILLION other ideers in my head for this weekend’s brunch). As I was out of the fixings for the fresh strawberry crepes I made for her birthday crepes, I had to regroup and come up with something else that would be just as satisfying, but different from my standard crepe indulgences. With 3 gorgeous, ripe mangos staring at me from my Big Bowl and some frozen berries I’d been meaning to finish, I knew another sensational fruity dish was a-comin’. And since I hadn’t had French toast in simply AGES (since my birthday, I think), I knew said dish would just have to be of the French toast persuasion.
This was my first attempt at a stuffed French toast version of my own and it turned out quite well. The mango & mixed berry combo was tasty & vibrant, and because I kept the other ingredients simple, it wasn’t the rich, heavy breakfast that it could have been. Not that I mind a rich breakfast every once in awhile, but let’s face it: a nice thick brioche, oodles of heavy whipping cream, and all the other amazing ingredients that can go into a restaurant-style stuffed French toast are not exactly Poor Girl friendly when it comes to my nano-budget. Especially when I had a nice loaf of oat & nut bread I could work with (like I always say: use what you have on hand!). The end result was a perfectly delicious, but much healthier version of this fun breakfast dish with plenty of sweet fruit. And as I just mentioned, keeping things simple & light reduced the cost dramatically. This is wonderful on its own but would also make a great addition to a Mother’s Day brunch buffet by keeping the pieces small and serving alongside other great dishes.
Mango & Berry Stuffed French Toast (serves 2-3; total cost per serving: $2.85)
6 large eggs
2 T nonfat milk
1 t vanilla extract
1 c chopped fresh mango
1 c frozen mixed berries, thawed
1 T granulated sugar
1 T + 1 t butter
Powdered sugar (optional for garnish)
In a small bowl combine the mixed berries & granulated sugar and allow to sit for about 1/2 hour, or until the berries have created their own syrup. Add the mango and toss together gently. Set aside.
Whisk together the eggs, milk and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Lightly butter each slice of bread with the teaspoon of butter (this will prevent the bread from becoming soggy from the berries), and add about 1/8 cup of the berry mango mixture to each slice. Put the slices together to form sandwiches, then dip each sandwich into the egg mixture. Melt the butter in a medium skillet and place one of the sandwiches into the skillet. Cook over medium heat for about 4-5 minutes on each side, until golden brown and slightly crispy along the edges. Repeat with remaining sandwiches.
To serve as pictured, spoon a bit of the berry syrup onto a small plate and swirl around until the bottom of the plate is coated. Cut each French toast sandwich diagonally in half and stack together. Top with the remaining mango-berry mixture, dust lightly with powdered sugar, and enjoy!