I’ve been planning to make this glorious number since Saturday morning, when we bought our rye loaf. I was waiting for it to get a bit stale, and then life happened, and now I had no choice but to put all life events on hold until this got made (and sometimes one just really needs to forcefully press “pause” in life and accept that things will not fall apart).Worth it? Oh yes.
For inspiration I was totally immersed in Jackie’s way of making french toast – the idea of stuffing the slice of bread itself instead of mashing two bits together is so imminently practical, so I had to replicate that trick here.
Ingredients (serves 3-6):
- 3 thick slices of rye or plain ciabatta or french loaf, somewhat stale (approx 4 – 5 cm thick)
- 1/2 tub tofu//1/2 cup (if you’re something of a purist you can sub this for an equal portion of red beans)
- 1 TBSP cacao powder
- 2 TBSP carob nuggets
- 1/2 cup pitted cherries, fresh, measured then chopped finely
- 1 – 2 TBSP liquid sweetener of choice
- 1 TBSP applesauce
- 1 TBSP vanilla essence
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 TBSP coffee powder
- 2 TBSP liquid sweetener (I used NuNaturals Simple Syrup)
- 2 TBSP caramel extract
- 1/3 cup carob nuggets
- Cinnamon to taste
- Preheat the oven to 180C and spray a 8″ round pan.
- Blend your filling except the cherries until smooth.
- Slice into the middle of your loaf slices along the top crust and create a pocket (be careful not to poke out on the sides).
- Stuff your slices evenly with the filling, then place flat next to each other in your baking pan.
- Blend your pouring sauce and pour that over the loaf slices, using a spoon to lift the pieces and make sure they are coated all round and on the sides.
- Sprinkle your carob nuggets on top and splash on lots of cinnamon.
- Bake for 35 – 40 minutes and serve warm with syrup or not (I thought it was sweet and moist enough without).
Man-thing says it’s like bread pudding which is a good thing I guess – the not-so-sweet tofu filling mixed with the little chocolate nugget toppings and the soft squishy pumpkin mocha sensation all round is just rather fabulous, I must say. Plus, one of these is hellishly filling, which is why you can even half it for a really scrumptious teatime snack.
Because I used a slightly dense rye bread (yum) the pumpkin sauce didn’t quite hit the centre, but that doesn’t mean the centre at all lacked gooey goodness. If you like your french toast crispy you can just bake it a bit longer or grill it, but I loved how soft it came out.
Anyhow, working on a savoury version today for WIAW – going to be a treat! 😀