Friday, December 26, 2008

Pannetone French toast with orange-bourbon syrup

...or, Special Christmas Breakfast

I really haven't gotten into the holiday spirit this year. No baking, no candy, nothing. I still have time to pretend I'm Russian, though, in which case the New Year celebration is more important. Technically, my people were German-Russian for a hundred years or so, and I'm calling that close enough. Ooh! Also, I found out recently that my great-grandmother was half Tatar (my father claims her conception was nefarious, but I can find no information that supports the claim that Mongol raids of the Volga were still happening in the 19th century). My first reaction was not surprise, or shock, but "omg, really? I'm part Asian? I knew it!" Now the slight almond shape to my eyes, my Nipponophilia and my hard-on for Stephen Chow makes so much sense. Being 1/16 Volga Tatar makes me practically Chinese, right?

But that's neither here nor there, and is typical of my digressions. On my journey to Trader Joe's (partly for sustenance, partly to escape cabin fever), I picked up one of my favorite holiday treats, pannetone. They didn't have any of my real fave, the orange and chocolate chip (I honestly haven't seen that kind in about a decade), so I grabbed the cranberry instead. Then I proceeded to forget that we had it for a couple days, just long enough for it to go a little stale.

Then I had the stroke of genius to make French toast with the pannetone (of course, now I find out that Giada deLaurentis makes it). I whipped up a quick batter of cream and eggs, orange zest, my homemade seven-spice and bourbon vanilla, a pinch of salt and a spoonful of sugar. I browned it in butter, then topped it with powdered sugar and a syrup of orange juice and zest, sugar and Maker's Mark, simmered until thick and good.

Serve with a little holiday cheer (in this case, mimosas, but I'll also accept "screwdriver", a propos of Russia). S Novim Godom!

22 comments:

Peter M said...

I too had Gaulist Toast yesterday but just used reg. bread and used eggnog for dunkin.

Hope you're having an effing good Christmas and a shot of something strong for me.

Emily said...

I like it.
I saw Giada make this on a holiday show. She drizzled it with cinnamon syrup. I like the orange-bourbon syrup though. I'm curious how much you paid for the pannetone. I saw some at Sam's and it was $6 and I didn't buy it because I'm waaay cheap.

cookiecrumb said...

It also makes insane bread pudding. If you have any left. We haven't unwrapped ours yet; probly going stale, or moldy, in there.
(Emily: It was lots more than $6, though I did find a $5 version to send to my parents. I'm that way.)

peter said...

But then you can see Russia from your house, right? It must be fun being one of Gengis Khan's 257,000,000 offspring.

I totally hear you about not feeling the holidays this year. I just ate a couple of poor people and called it a night.

Judy@nofearentertaining said...

My favorite french toast!!! I need to make that syrup though! Hope even without rally feeling the holidays this year you at least had some great time off?

Peter G said...

I always knew there was more to your heritage than you let on...pannetone always tastes better a few days later...you've made it even better with this recipe.

Heather said...

Peter the Greek - A shot? For you, anything. ;)

Em - Ooh, cinnamon syrup would be good, too. Someone else in the bloggything made some, too, I jsut saw on Foodgawker. Mine was $5.99, and was worth it. It's huge!

Cookiecrumb - That's what I was thinking. With crème anglaise.

Jube - No, that's Sarah Palin you're thinking. Re: Papa Gengi - I always knew my penchant for blood and curdled horse milk had to be genetic.

Judy - The time off is always nice - I think it was just a little anticlimactic cuzza being stuck at home in the snow all week.

Petah - I gotta tell ya, it's good to be Asian.

James said...

Italian pain perdu. Looks delicious! Did you ever get my cure recipe for your pork belly?

James said...

Oh yeah btw, you do have high pronounced cheekbones, an Asian phenotype.

Choosy Beggar Tina said...

Despite my loathing and abhorrence for all things related to Giada, because these came from *you* I think your French Toast looks delightful. Also, I totally Googled Makers Mark to figure out what that was, and I think I'm half disappointed not to have seen more religious zealot references.....

Manggy said...

Ah, it is good to be Asian, innit? Hee hee. You should've joined ANTM, Tyra would have had such fun calling you all sorts of different ethnicities, then call you too wild and then later insist that you've lost your spark. Of course, you can always win her over with these yummy pains perdu and elk sirloin.

Elra said...

This is so perfect for holiday season breakfast. Sound really delicious.
Cheers,
Elra

Syd said...

Reading your blog makes me feel wholly inadequate in the creativity department. I'd never have thought of this.

But, I'm not too proud to copy your ass.

Lo said...

Perfect breakfast, Heather. But, then again, I'd expect as much.

As for your heritage... such fun when you learn something new about yourself, innit?

Heather said...

James - No, I never did! I'll email you for it. Thanks. :)

Tina - I always thought it referenced archery or something before I found out. :P

Mark - I think you just summed up a whole season of ANTM right there.

Elra - I suspect it'd be good during the rest of the year, too, but it's hard to beat French toast. :)

Syd - If it's any consolation, I've been seeing it all over the place and can hardly take any credit for it. You can copy the shit out of it.

Lo - It's just nice to know that I really am a unique snowflake.

Bren said...

Please invite me over for breakfast sometime in the Spring where you'll make these and I'll bring the Cuban espresso with the mint chocolate ganache!

Jude said...

Good stuff.. Even the stalest panettone makes great french toast. I'll be glad to call you my long lost Asian sister when you get that family tree worked out.

Kevin said...

What a breakfast to wakre up to!

We Are Never Full said...

ok, i've got alot to catch up on. but i hope you had a bitchin' christmas!

and i will call you a genius but never will i call giada dilaurentiis a genius. never.

lisaiscooking said...

orange-bourbon syrup will now join my breakfast repertoire. thank you.

Foodycat said...

Glad you found a good use for pannetone. If I end up with one it usually turns into bread pudding (with seville orange marmalade and a cointreau custard).

I am similarly 1/16th Chinese, as a great, great grandmother was a missionary in the 19th century and had a strangely yellow-skinned, dark haired family.

Marc @ NoRecipes said...

LOL that's awesome! Welcome to the yellow side. I've actually been wanting to get genotyped as I have a feeling I have some Russian in me. Not just because of my penchant for vodka, but because when I grow facial hair about half of it comes in reddish blond.