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Pain Perdu with Amarena Cherries

Pain Perdu with Amarena Cherries
This French toast (known as pain perdu in France) is prepared using slices of panettone. Served with cherries and whipped cream, this fanciful dish is perfect for the winter holidays.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 purchased panettone, about 1 lb.
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 Tbs. Cointreau or other orange liqueur
      (optional)
  • 3 Tbs. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Softened unsalted butter for cooking
  • Fabbri amarena cherries in syrup for serving*
  • Whipped cream for serving

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 200°F.

Cut the panettone into 5 or 6 vertical slices, each 1 inch thick, then cut all but the end slices in half. Set aside.

In a bowl, whisk the eggs until just blended, then whisk in the milk, orange zest, orange juice, Cointreau, sugar and cinnamon. Pour the mixture into a large, shallow baking dish. Place half of the panettone slices in the mixture and soak for about 10 seconds per side.

Set a large sauté pan or grill pan over medium heat and brush with butter. When the butter foams, add some of the soaked bread slices, taking care not to crowd them. Cook, turning once, until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Turn the slices over again and cook them until browned to your taste, 2 to 3 minutes more. Using a slotted spatula, transfer the panettone to a platter and keep warm in the oven.

Cook the remaining soaked slices, then soak and cook the rest of the panettone. Serve immediately with amarena cherries and whipped cream.Serves 4.

Williams-Sonoma Kitchen

* Available at Williams-Sonoma stores.