I love making bread. The act of mixing just a couple of ingredients to eventually yield a beautiful loaf is a work of art. Recently, I decided to make my very first challah. The kneading process always seemed intimidating but I decided to take on this challenge during these quarantine times. No time like the present, right? Well, it wasn't perfect, but the challah texture was surely delightful, making it the perfect vessel for this smoked salmon french toast. What could be better than having fresh homemade bread? Turning that bread into a savory breakfast. Or if you're like me, savory dinner...or savory lunch.
Smoked Salmon French Toast
- ½ cup creme fraiche
- 2 tablespoon stone ground mustard
- 8 slices challah bread
- ⅔ cup milk
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup parmesan grated
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 8 ounces smoked salmon
- 1-2 tablespoon capers
- ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion
- 8 poached eggs
- fresh dill for garnish
- Make the mustard sauce. Mix together ½ cup creme fraiche with 2 tablespoon stone ground mustard. Set aside.
- Prepare the batter for the french toast. Mix together ⅔ cup milk with ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, 2 eggs, and ¼ cup grated parmesan. Dip the challah bread slices in the batter and let it sit for 10 seconds.
- Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a griddle or nonstick pan over medium-low heat. Cook the french toast until golden brown, flip and cook on the other side. Add additional butter as needed. Repeat with the remaining bread.
- Top the french toast with slices of smoked salmon, capers, thinly sliced red onion, poached eggs, fresh dill, and a dollop of the mustard creme fraiche. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
Usually, if you go out for breakfast, all of the french toast options are sweet. But sometimes, I want a couple of slices of that french toast with a savory topping. And that's where this smoked salmon french toast comes in. It's like you're having bagels with lox but on a french toast...with a poached egg. And a delicious mustard creme fraiche. I don't know about you, but that sounds better than bagels and lox to me!
How you prepare this savory french toast is no different than making a sweet version except with a couple of additional ingredients. Add garlic powder, black pepper, and parmesan to the egg and milk powder to give the bread extra flavor.
You can use other bread than challah including but not limited to Pullman bread and brioche. Slice the bread to about 1 inch thick so that the bread doesn't just fall apart and turn to mush while cooking.
While the bread is cooking, prepare the toppings. Thinly slice the red onion and soak them in ice-cold water if you want to cut down on the sharp flavor. Pick some fresh dill, make the mustard creme fraiche, and gather the smoked salmon and capers. This would also be the ideal time to poach some eggs. I served one egg per slice of french toast, for a total of 8 eggs for 8 slices.
Now it's time to pile on the toppings! I like to place a dollop of the mustard creme fraiche right on top of the poached eggs and serve extra on the side. Don't forget to season with salt and pepper for the finishing touch.
And there you have it. A beautiful savory smoked salmon french toast. By the time I finished preparing this, it was dinner time but you know what? It was still amazing for dinner. The thick challah slices coated in a parmesan batter topped with a runny egg and smoked salmon were just heavenly.
For more french toast inspiration check out this cheese brioche french toast!