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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Peanut Butter Oven-Baked French Toast

Another recipe pilfered from my husband's grandma's 1944 home ec cookbook.  Back in the day, this recipe was called "Peanut Chops", another attempt to pass off an alternate protein source as being "just like meat!!".  The virtues of this recipe in 1944 were being inexpensive, offering protein when meat was rationed, and bearing a passing resemblance to actual pork chops.  Today's virtues are that it's inexpensive, freezer-friendly, kid-friendly, easy to cook (think oven-baked French toast), and it does actually feel like an oven-fried pork chop in your mouth...strange, huh?  Actually they remind me of a vegetarian oven-baked chicken nugget.

My husband is still commenting on how filling this meal was...I guess he had expected differently?  But with 18g of protein and 5 grams of fiber (or more, if you use whole wheat crackers and whole grain bread), who is surprised?

The original recipe calls for cutting 6 slices of rye bread into "fingers".  I used 1/2 a loaf of "cocktail rye", you know those tiny 3"x3" loaves you see up by the deli.  The slices are easy to handle and are perfectly sized for the recipe, but feel free to use regular slices of rye, or even pumpernickel. 

You can also substitute any nut or seed butter you wish to make this recipe allergy-friendly to those with peanut sensitivities.

Peanut Butter Oven-Baked French Toast or "Peanut Chops"
Makes 6 servings

1/2 lb. cocktail rye bread (1/2 loaf)
1 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
salt and pepper to taste
1 sleeve Ritz crackers, ground finely in the food processor

Spread each slice of bread on both sides with peanut butter.  I made stacks to contain to the mess...I spread PB on one side, turned the slice PB side down and spread more PB on the top, then spread PB on another slice, turned it PB side down on top of the 1st slice, spread PB on the 2nd side, and so on.

Whisk the milk, eggs and salt and pepper together.  Dip each slice in the milk mixture, then dredge in the cracker crumbs.  Lay on a baking sheet, and freeze if desired.  Transfer to a freezer bag when frozen.

To bake, do not thaw.  Bake at 425F for 15-20 minutes (20-25 minutes if baking from frozen), until tops are lightly browned. Pin It

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