No regrets here about my recipe for vegan French Toast in Gene Baur’s Living the Farm Sanctuary Life book. It’s a keeper—delicious, healthy and easy to make. Last night, though, when I was organizing my freezer, (yes, that is a thing I do regularly, the fridge too), and saw the bag of chickpea flour I’d purchased recently at the Italian Market on 9th Street in Philadelphia, as well as a couple of thick-ish slices of whole grain bread, I decided to see about using that chickpea flour in a French toast batter. After all, it is used to make non-egg omelets, and I wanted something different for dinner.
While I was making notes on how I might proceed with this recipe, I was munching on two of my can’t-get-enough-of summer foods—sweet red cherries and sweet cherry tomatoes. The basil growing on my terrace is doing well, and I had an organic lemon and a jar of the Sweet Balsamic Reduction we use in the Essential Vegan Desserts course. Another alternative to making the Sweet Balsamic Reduction is to use a quality thick Balsamic with a small amount of maple syrup mixed in. I use the thick and slightly sweet Balsamic from Cardena’s Taproom.
Tossing the components for the topping, I realized this French toast dinner would be savory, with a bit of sweet, but you can surely pour on the more traditional pure maple syrup instead. I will do that another time, likely adding berries to the maple syrup.
I hope you’ll try this Savory and Sweet French Toast recipe and let me know what you think in the comments below. I think the date paste adds just enough sweetness but if you want more, use abother sweetener. I’d like to know your favorite ways to make and eat French toast too. No eggs, no problem! In fact, you might want to double the recipe.
Savory and Sweet French Toast Recipe Notes:
- I use soymilk. If you are soy averse or nut allergic, use full-fat coconut milk, cut 50:50 with water. Please do not buy light—who needs to pay for water?!
- I cooked 3 pieces of the French toast differently:
- in vegan butter
- in coconut oil
- in my air fryer
- The coconut oil slice seemed to get almost too dark too fast but it tasted good. Be careful if using coconut oil.
- The air fryer slice took time to brown, so don’t overcook it or it won’t taste custardy. This is a great option for an oil-free or mostly oil-free meal.
Savory and Sweet French Toast
Made with chickpea flour, this Savory and Sweet French Toast is topped with a Sweet Balsamic Reduction and macerated cherries and tomatoes. This recipe makes 4 pieces of Savory- Sweet French Toast. The batter yield is 3/4 cup.
- 1/2 cup almond milk, soy milk, or coconut milk (see note)
- 4 tablespoons date paste or 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup (grade A dark)
- 2 tablespoons chickpea flour
- 1/4 teaspoon nutritional yeast, optional, but recommended
- 1/2 teaspoon ground chia seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- pinch fine sea salt
- 4 to 5 slices slightly stale bread
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil, vegan buttery spread, or mild tasting extra virgin olive oil, more as needed (Or lightly spray and air fry on high until browned)
Pour the plant milk, date paste or maple syrup, chickpea flour, nutritional yeast if using, cinnamon, and salt into a narrow container and blend with a stick blender until thoroughly mixed. Alternatively, blend all of the ingredients, except the bread in a high-speed blender and blend on high until the batter is thick. I have to tell you that this batter does not taste good, but the French toast will be yummy.
- Pour the batter (you will have about 3/4 cup) into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Press the bread into the batter. Wait 5 to 10 minutes and then turn each slice over with a wide spatula. Spoon some of the batter over the top of the bread. Allow the bread to soak another 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the bread, turning the slices over another time.
- When you are ready to cook, put 2 tablespoons of the melted coconut oil, vegan buttery spread, or olive oil (or use a combination) onto a griddle or heavy bottom pan and heat over medium until the fat begins to sizzle.
- Place as many slices in the on the griddle as will fit without touching. Cook 5 minutes on each side, turning the slices with a wide spatula. Increase the heat and flip again if necessary to get a darker color.
- Serve warm with the macerated cherries and sweet cherry tomatoes. Or go ahead and pour on the maple syrup!
Macerated Sweet Red Cherries and Mixed Cherry Tomatoes
- As many sweet red cherries as you’d like to eat and are willing to pit
- Same goes with the cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- Pinch large grain sea salt, shed in your fingers cru
- 1 tablespoon Sweet Balsamic Reduction (or 1 tablespoon good quality thick balsamic and 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup)
- finely minced lemon zest
- chiffonade basil
- Mix the fruit, tomatoes (technically a fruit), salt, sweet balsamic, and lemon zest together in a small bowl. Set aside to macerate. Add the basil just before serving. (I bet mint would be delicious too, but I’m not growing that in my terrace garden.)
What’s your favorite way to make French toast?