Honey French Toast

YIELD: 4 servings

INGREDIENTS

6 slices white or wholegrain bread from rustic loaf thickly-sliced (3/4-inch)
1 cup milk
2 eggs large
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Ground cinnamon to taste (optional)
1 to 2 tablespoons butter unsalted
⅓ cup honey or more to taste

DIRECTIONS

Place the bread in a single layer in a large, shallow roasting pan or baking dish.

In a bowl, whisk the milk, eggs, honey, and vanilla. Pour evenly over the bread. Soak for about 30 minutes, tilting the pan often and using a spoon to distribute the milk mixture over the bread. Press the bread lightly with the back of the spoon to encourage it to absorb all of the liquid. Sprinkle with the cinnamon.

Heat a heavy skillet large enough to hold the bread in a single layer, over medium heat. Add the butter and tilt the pan until the butter melts and evenly coats the bottom. Add the soaked bread and cook for about 3 minutes, or until browned on the bottom, adjusting the heat to maintain a steady but gentle sizzle. Turn the bread with a wide spatula and brown the other side for about 3 minutes. Drizzle the honey evenly over the tops and cook for about 1 minute, or until the honey begins to bubble. Turn the bread over and brown the other side, spooning the bubbling honey over the top.

Transfer the French toast to a platter and serve plain, with warmed honey butter sauce, or topped with your favorite topping.