French Toast with Port and Cinnamon

Fatias dourada ou Rabanadas

“Golden slices” in English, Fatias dourada are a comforting treat to cozy up with on cold winter days. I found day-old sweet bread at my local supermarket and decided now was a good time to open the bottle of Port wine I received for Christmas.

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My friend Fatima Silva traditionally makes this on Christmas Eve, but there’s no limit on when you can enjoy this cinnamon-y dessert!

The golden slices, piled high into a pyramid, drip and form a delicious cascade of sugar, cinnamon, and Port wine. Fresh berries or fruit are a delicious addition and, for a special occasion, add a dollop of sweetened whip cream.

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Brief frying gives the slices of bread a crispy outer layer while retaining its creamy milk and Port centre. Make sure the bread is at least one day old so that it can tolerate the soaking without falling apart.

*Carla’s tip*: You can use a variety of breads when the recipe calls for “French loaf”. Try sweet egg bread or raisin bread. And if this is too much dessert for you to handle at once, the recipe can be cut in half.

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I’m happy to introduce Tayler Rozon, a certified Sommelier, as the blog’s new wine expert. She got a tough first assignment — French Toast! Let’s see what she recommends:

“Wine is not always an immediate thought when it comes to having dessert. However, there are a number of wine options that can take a familiar dessert to the next level. The basic rule when pairing wine with sweets is that the wine must be sweeter than the food. For this Portuguese French Toast a natural choice would be Port! If you are looking to get more adventurous I would recommend a Hungarian Tokaji Aszu. The Tokaji’s flavours of orange marmalade, apricot, and honey would meld well, especially if using a raisin or nut bread for the toast. A final suggestion would be Canadian Cabernet Franc Icewine. The intense favours of strawberries, raspberries, and rhubarb will pair beautifully with the red fruit flavours of the port. Cheers!”

Thanks, Tayler! I’m going to have to hunt down a bottle of Tokaji

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French Toast with Port and Cinnamon

  • Servings: 12 pieces of French toast
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 day-old French loaf (See “Carla’s Tip” above!)
  • 2 cups port
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 5 Tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • You’ll also need 3 shallow bowls, 1 flat dish, and a large skillet

Instructions

  1. Cut the bread into 1 1/2″ slices and set aside. You should have about 12 slices of bread without the ends, depending on the loaf size.
  2. Prepare 3 shallow bowls, each large enough to fit one bread slice. In one bowl place the port, in another bowl combine the milk and 2 Tbsp of the cinnamon, and in the third bowl whisk the eggs. Set aside.
  3. In a flat dish, combine the sugar and the remaining 3 Tbsp of cinnamon.
  4. In a large skillet, add 1/2″ of oil and heat to 375F
  5. Working one slice at a time (and on both sides), dip each first in the Port bowl, then the milk mixture bowl, then the egg bowl. The bread should be wet but not soggy. If it becomes too soggy or heavy in either of the first two bowls, gently squeeze out the excess liquid from the bread before dipping into the eggs.
  6. Using two forks, carefully place the egg-covered slices into the hot oil, 2 to 3 slices at a time. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes per side or until browned all over; if necessary, adjust the heat to keep the bread slices from browning too quickly.
  7. Briefly drain each piece on paper towels and then roll in the cinnamon sugar, coating all over, while the bread is still hot.
  8. Repeat the process with the remaining bread slices. If necessary, add more oil or, if the oil is becoming too dark with bits of cinnamon, change the oil midway through frying.
  9. If you’re feeling fancy, place 4 slices of cinnamon toast on a plate and build layers of overlapping slices to form a tiered pyramid. Set aside for at least an hour before serving to allow the syrup to drip and pool. (I usually can’t wait this long and like to eat the French toast slices while still warm!).

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