Chunky Monkey French Toast
Chunky Monkey French Toast- Thick brioche bread slices are soaked in a peanut butter custard, toasted in butter to perfection, and topped with sweet caramelized bananas and mini chocolate chips.
February 25, 2021 by Nicole Collins
We all know I'm not much of a sweet breakfast eater.
That's no secret.
But every now and then, I crave a big ol' pile of breakfast pastries.
It's ironic, actually. Because, my pre-COVID breakfast routine for years was a sweet and fruity greek yogurt plus a banana. I would take the same breakfast to work every single day. Then, the weekends were always my opportunity to eat what I really REALLY wanted to eat.
But since working from home for the past year, I've been eating the breakfasts of my dreams every single day. There have been all of the egg scrambles, all of the avocado toasts, and all of the breakfast tacos that a girl could dream of. And even though I'll take a savory breakfast over a sweet one any day of the week, every now and then I get the intense craving for something extra sweet.
Well for all of you sweet breakfast eaters, the time is now!
Today, we're making Chunky Monkey French Toast!
Here's the gameplan. We're going to make a thick and creamy peanut butter custard to soak some bread for french toast. Then, we'll cook it in butter until it's toasted to perfection. And, we'll top our fluffy french toast with some caramelized bananas and some baby chocolate chips.
Does that sound like a super delicious plan, or what?
Let's start with the french toast. My bread of choice for any french toast is one that it sliced a little thicker and preferably rich and buttery. Brioche falls into that category, so that's what we're using today. I'm able to find pre-sliced brioche bread in my local supermarket. But if you're not, you can buy a loaf of brioche and slice it yourself into slices that are about an inch thick.
To soak our yummy bread, we're going to make a quick and simple peanut buttery custard. All we need is a couple of eggs, some cream, a little sugar, a splash of vanilla, a good plop of peanut butter, and a little pinch of cinnamon and salt. We need to whisk whisk whisk this custard super duper well in order to break down all of the peanut butter so that it's smooth and creamy in our sauce. I actually prefer to use a fork to do the whisking. I find that I have better control when it comes to breaking down the peanut butter. But, a traditional whisk absolutely works here too.
Once our custard is nice and smooth, we'll dip our bread into the custard, give it a few seconds to soak up all that creamy deliciousness, then to a buttery skillet it goes to toast up until it's crisp and golden on the outside while still being fluffy and creamy on the inside.
It could be argued that the best part about any meal is the toppings. So, we're going all out for this french toast. First, we're going to caramelize some bananas in the same buttery skillet that we used to cook our french toast. Now, bananas are full of natural sugars. So, we really don't need to do anything but slice a banana and toss it right into our skillet to caramelize. I would recommend using a slightly firmer banana for these caramelized bananas so that they don't turn to mush as the cook. And as soon as they're perfectly golden on both sides, we'll give those bananas a little pinch of flaky sea salt to help balance out the intense sweetness.
To serve, we take our peanut butter french toast, give it a drizzle of maple syrup, top it with our caramelized bananas, and finish it with a sprinkle of mini chocolate chips.
When it's time to eat, we have sweet and savory notes hitting us from all directions. The maple syrup, caramelized bananas, and chocolate chips bring all the sweetness you could ever want from a purposefully sweet breakfast. At the same time, the peanut butter in the custard plus that little pinch of flaky salt on the bananas helps to balance out the sweetness to create the perfect blend in every bite.
This is truly a yummy breakfast. And, that says a lot coming from a savory breakfast lover like me!
Ok, everyone. Tell me...are you team sweet breakfast or team savory? Because, you know I have something for everyone.
I hope you enjoy. And, let's eat!
Chunky Monkey French Toast
Serves: 6 slices Print
½ cup heavy cream
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
¼ cup peanut butter
6 slices brioche bread
1-2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 bananas, sliced
6 tbsp mini chocolate chips
flaky sea salt
maple syrup, for serving
In a wide, shallow bowl, add ½ cup heavy cream, eggs, sugar, salt, cinnamon, vanilla, and peanut butter. Whisk well to combine, making sure to break up the egg whites and peanut butter completely.
Take one slice of brioche, and dip both sides of the bread in the egg custard mix until completely covered in egg, 5-7 seconds per side. Transfer to a plate, and repeat with remaining slices.
Melt 1 tbsp butter over medium heat in a large nonstick skillet. Add brioche to the skillet, making sure not to crowd the pan. Cook for 3-5 mins until the bottoms are golden brown. Flip, and cook for an additional 3-4 mins until the other side is golden brown. Repeat with remaining slices, if necessary, adding more butter to the pan if it looks dry. Set french toast aside.
Increase the heat on the skillet to medium high. Add ½ tbsp butter to the skillet. Add banana slices, and cook for 2-3 mins per side until the bananas start to caramelize. Remove from heat, and sprinkle with a tiny pinch of flaky sea salt.
To serve, drizzle each slice of french toast with desired amount of maple syrup. Top with caramelized bananas and mini chocolate chips. Enjoy!
*I find it easier to whisk the peanut butter custard mix with a fork as opposed to a whisk. You need to really, really, whisk this mix well in order to break down the peanut butter, but it will ultimately mix in smoothly.
*You could add the bananas to the french toast without caramelizing them first, but heating them on the skillet really helps to develop their natural sweetness. I prefer to start with a slightly firmer banana so it doesn't turn to mush in the pan.
*Brioche bread loaves typically have slices cut a little thicker than regular sandwich bread. If you can't find pre-cut slices, buy a loaf of brioche and slice the bread to about an inch thickness.