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Chocolate-Stuffed French Toast

Tips: Use firm-textured bread for this, preferably some that is slightly stale. The bread slices should be about 1/2 inch thick. I like to use cinnamon-raisin bread or challah, but you can use any bread based mostly upon white flour (whole grain isn't the right type of bread for this). A great brunch dish! Apricot preserves are my favorite with this French toast.

Yield: 4 sandwiches, 2 to 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 8 slices firm-textured, slightly stale bread, each slice about 1/2 inch thick
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp. confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla, divided
  • 4 Tbsp. miniature semisweet chocolate chips, divided
  • 2 eggs, graded "large"
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • Butter for griddle (if griddle is not nonstick)
    For serving:
  • Confectioners' sugar
  • Warm preserves

Method:

Place bread on flat surface. In small bowl, by hand, beat softened cream cheese, confectioners' sugar, and 1 tsp. vanilla (reserve remainder) until well-combined and perfectly smooth. Spread one side of each bread slice with cream cheese mixture, going all the way to the edges.

Sprinkle 1 Tbsp. of the chocolate chips on top of the cream cheese on four of the slices, keeping chips a bit away from the edges. Cover each slice with chips, with a slice without chips, cream cheese sides facing in. This will result in 4 "sandwiches", all with cream cheese sides in and chocolate chips in the middle. Press each sandwich together gently.

In flat-bottomed dish large enough to accomodate one of the sandwiches, beat together eggs, milk, and remaining vanilla with a fork until well-combined. Preheat griddle over medium heat until a few drops of water scattered on the surface move around rapidly before evaporating quickly; grease griddle with a small amount of butter if not nonstick. Dip each sandwich into egg mixture, turning over with fork to make sure all surfaces are well-covered. Place each dipped sandwich on preheated griddle. Cook over medium heat, turning once, till a light golden brown on each side (this will take a few minutes on the first side and less time on the second side). Serve immediately, but be careful--the melted chocolate inside will be very hot.

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