IMBB 25: Pain Perdu Panino

Originally uploaded by kerner.

As my return to IMBB with the Give Us This Day Yesterday’s Bread theme I decided to try combining pain perdu (french toast) and the panini – two things I am very fond of  eating. I didn’t think to let any bread go stale, so I stuck pieces in a warm oven (about 225° F) for 10 minutes then let them cool. I used a bread from Bakers Inn (which is the bread we buy for daily use). The filling is shaved, smoked ham and pepper jack cheese. This is a savory french toast. The bread is slightly crisp on the outside and custardy on the inside. The ham and melted cheese make for a nice spicy sandwich.

I should have cooked mine slightly longer, the bread was not quite as crisp as I would have liked. Also note that this might be an equipment intensive recipe. I prepared mine using the Griddler  that Sarah got me for Christmas – I used the flat plate on the bottom and the ridged plate on the top. You could also do this with some combination of a griddle, grill pan, nonstick skillet, and panini maker. 

Pain Perdu Panino (serves 2)

  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 slices of stale/dry bread
  • 8 very thin (shaved) slices of ham
  • 1  cup grated pepper jack cheese

Warm griddle/sandwich press to medium-high heat.Whisk together milk and egg to combine. Dip slices of bread on each side so they soak up a sufficient amount of the batter. Use slightly less than you would normally use for french toast as you have to move the bread around before it is fully cooked.  Cook one side of the bread to normal french toast doneness (3-4 minutes) – this is the  middle of the  sandwich. Turn and cook other side until set, but not browned(2-3 minutes) – this is the outside of the sandwich. Assemble sandwiches with the fully cooked sides of the bread inward – bread, cheese, ham, bread. Toast in panini maker until outsides of sandwich show grill marks and are fully cooked. Slice, enjoy.