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BN Cuisine with Chef Alex: French Toast with a Twist



Chef Alex - picFrench toast to me, means comfort food. It’s quick and easy to make, but when done right – with the right ingredients – can be elevated to stand alongside the best of morning and dessert classics.

Today, I going to show you a flavour pairing that just sets my senses off, I mean these three flavours in tandem make my mouth (and belly) sing HALLELUJAH!

I’m talking about orange, natural honey (or maple syrup) and cardamom. In fact, I think I’m in a relationship with these three flavours, and it’s complicated. Hmm…

Anyway, back on task. Here’s my recipe for “French Toast with a Twist.”

You’ll need (enough for 4-6 servings):
1 Brioche loaf (staled a day or two on the kitchen counter)
2 eggs
1tbsp honey (or maple syrup)
1tsp cinnamon
1 pinch salt
1tbsp sugar (depending on how sweet you like it)
2 knobs of butter
1tbsp orange marmalade, confit or jam
2pods of cardamom, cracked open and seeds ground and sieved
1/2 cup of whole milk
1/2 cup of whipping cream

How To
Preheat your oven to 200C, get an oven tray lined with parchment paper ready.

Slice the bread into rough two-three inch dice. You may take off the crust as well if you’re not a fan, I’ve left them on for a rustic look and feel to the dish, plus brioche isn’t really a “crusty” bread.
Mix the custard: in a large bowl, combine eggs, milk, cream, cinnamon and cardamom, honey (or maple syrup), orange marmalade, sugar and salt. Whisk together.
Dunk and soak the brioche chunks in the custard. Make sure they are completely soaked for a nice moist french toast.
Place on baking tray, top with peanut sized chunks of butter, and place in oven.
When the top appears to be browning, flip over and top again with butter. Place back in oven and cook until the underside of the french toast appears brown again.

Serve with ice cream, caramel sauce, gingersnap or graham crumbs. You can also toast some flaked almonds or blend them into a coarse “sand,” this adds a new flavour profile to the mix which works very well with those we’ve already built up.
Enjoy 😀

This is a quick and easy French Toast with a Twist that’s sure to entertain a Saturday or Sunday brunch, or a dinner party.
Until next time, keep cooking with class and serving with style 😉

Alex Oke is a Nigerian chef who’s patently passionate about bread, pastry and confections. He trained in classical/contemporary French cuisine at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts in Canada, and currently lives and works in Lagos, Nigeria. Follow his personal and culinary adventures on Instagram @alexcooksfood, where he currently photoblogs.


  1. keeks

    October 30, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    yayyy!!! something new! m one to always try out new cooking tricks. must i use Brioche bread? also does the staleness add to the overall flavour? also to what temp do i pre heat the oven? or i just wing it?

    • Alex

      November 9, 2015 at 12:12 pm

      You don’t have to use Brioche, but this bread lends a richer quality to the end product. If you must, use any white, sweet bread as replacement.

    • Alex

      November 9, 2015 at 12:13 pm

      Preheat the oven to about 180C, but cook with your eyes, not with time. The staleness makes the bread more workable but if you’ve only got fresh bread, use it.

  2. jaybird

    October 30, 2015 at 3:57 pm

    Ok. I go try this one Bt wt my normal unsliced bread….:-)

  3. Anon

    October 30, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    Chef Alex, where have you been? Welcome back. I gave up French Toast ages ago because of the frying. I moved to bread and butter pudding which is baked. This is a variant of it right? My kids love brioche. I finally learnt how to bake it. Will try this. Ta, Chef.

    • Alex

      November 9, 2015 at 12:14 pm

      I’ve been getting to know Lagos :D. I’m glad you missed me, as I love sharing recipes with you guys. Baked french toast is a variation on the pan fried version, you’re correct!

  4. Fifi

    October 30, 2015 at 6:59 pm

    Alex for president of my belly matters delicio

  5. Mabel

    October 30, 2015 at 7:09 pm

    I’d eat this for dessert, with a scoop of ice-cream, some whipped cream, a splash of Baileys for strength, and maybe some chopped nuts. Simply divine!

    • Alex

      November 9, 2015 at 12:15 pm


  6. Tosin

    October 31, 2015 at 4:47 am

    that first paragraph was so sweet. the food, ehn, depends on who’s feeding 😉 Not really a sweets person (though i do lurve French Toast)

  7. hmmmmmm

    October 31, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    Chef Alex, Where do get whole milk from in lagos ooo only peakmill dey? How many calories per serving also thanks

    • Alex

      November 9, 2015 at 12:17 pm

      This has about 300-500 calories per serving depending also on the sauce, nuts etc. Whole milk can be found all over lagos. Whole milk just means about 3.5% fat content, this is present in Peak Full cream, Hollandia, Oldenburger UHT etc etc.

  8. Wandoo Ityavyar

    November 2, 2015 at 2:42 am

    Orange, natural honey (or maple syrup) and cardamom. Hmmm. Honey. I’m a bad vegan, I eat honey. That’s an interesting combination. I’ve had cardamom before, but I couldn’t explain it to someone who has never tasted it even if I tried. Indians are big with their cardamom. I’ve had it mostly in curries.
    I absolutely live for orange and chocolate. I don’t know, there’s something about that combination.

    That broiche bread looks succulent!

  9. whocares

    November 2, 2015 at 3:18 pm

    OOOOH. You have ruined me. You have absolutely ruined me with this recipe. *sigh* of course I have to try it now, and then eat at least half a dozen of them without remorse. Saturday morning brekkie!!!

  10. zzzzzzzzzzzz

    November 20, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    Can Agege Bread be used (Hehehehehhe!)

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