French Toast Recipe with Apple Currant Compote

On weekends, we love to cook breakfast here at the Martin household. It’s really the one time of the week that I’m actually able to cook Jeremy a meal and have him eat it with me. Typically, I do most of my cooking during the day, and he has some form of leftovers for dinner.  He’s a real sport about it (thankfully!) so that’s why we make breakfast a priority on the weekends.

This French toast recipe is one that I’ve used for years but am now just getting to publish for you fine folks.  I’ve added in an apple currant compote just for fun and a little weekend lagniappe for you!

French Toast topped with Apple Currant Compote

French toast is something I’m sure most people grew up eating.  We certainly did in our household.  Down here in south Louisiana it’s also called pain perdu or “lost bread.”  It is so named because it was a way for people to utilize the French bread from the previous day that had already gone stale.  True French bread has little to no fat in it so it doesn’t stay fresh longer than a day.  Since the loaves are typically 18″ to 24″ in length, there’s bound to be leftovers. Thus, pain perdu was born.

I made this particular batch of French toast with a baguette that I bought at Whole Foods.  You can use any type of bread for this really.  There’s no right or wrong here.  Actually, just make sure you’re not using rosemary garlic focaccia or something like that. I don’t think that would make a killer French toast, now would it?  And you don’t actually have to use stale bread for this.  Fresh bread will work just fine.  It might be a little “softer” than day old bread but will still taste good.

A composite photo of French toast cooking

The compote is rich, buttery and sweet.  The apples and currants marry well to form a sweet topping for the French toast.  I used a Fuji apple and recommend using a sweeter variety of apple like Gala, Pink Lady or Fuji. I’d stay away from things like Granny Smith or Red Delicious, as they are not as sweet overall. The texture of the former list of apples is also a little softer so they’ll break down better.  I also did not peel my apples.  I like to keep the peelings on my apples whenever I can.  If you’d like to peel them, go for it.  Your apples will likely break down a little further but will still be very tasty.

Composite photo of the apple currant compote

For those of you that might not be familiar with currants, they are very similar to raisins. Some currants, like the Zante currants I used here, are actually dried grapes.  The Zante currant is a dried Corinth grape.  They are small, sweet and tender.  I like them better than raisins mainly because they are smaller and softer.  Other currants like red currants and black currants are a different plant (not grapes).

French toast topped with apple currant compote

One of the things I like best about French toast is how simple it is to make.  Whip up a quick batter, heat the skillet, cook then done.  That being said, if you don’t have time for the compote, at the very least, you can whip up a batch of the bread.

French toast topped with apple currant compote

So now that it’s breakfast-time, on to the recipe!

Yield: 4 servings

French Toast Recipe with Apple Currant Compote

This simple French toast recipe is accompanied by a delicious apple currant compote. Makes a great fall breakfast!

Ingredients:

Apple Currant Compote:
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup Zante currants
  • 1 sweet apple, cored and thinly sliced (optional: peel the apple)
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
French Toast:
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 baguette, thinly sliced

Method:

For Apple Currant Compote:
    1. Over medium-high heat, melt the butter.
    2. Add remaining ingredients and still well until combined.
    3. Turn heat to low, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Stir every few minutes to ensure even cooking.
    4. After 15 minutes, shut off heat and keep covered until ready to plate up the French toast.
For French Toast:
  1. Combine all ingredients except baguette in a bowl. Mix to combine.
  2. Once the compote is ready, it's time to start on the French toast.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Spray with non-stick spray or melt a pat of butter in the pan.
  4. One slice at a time, dip the bread into the batter and place in the skillet.
  5. Allow to cook 1-2 minutes on each side until dark golden brown.
  6. When french toast is done, divide between plates, top with compote and serve.

"Prep Time" includes the time to cook the apple currant compote.

Prep:25 min

Cook:10 min

Total:35 min

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