Over Christmas we found ourselves watching episodes of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives on the Food Network. I’m a big fan of the show, because host Guy Fieri champions the unique, local, family-owned, one-of-a-kind restaurants around the country. We need more of those places. I’m especially interested whenever he highlights breakfast joints, so one particular episode, in which he visited the Blue Moon Cafe in Baltimore, caught my eye. One of Blue Moon’s signature dishes is their Captain Crunch French Toast. It looked too delicious, so we had to try making it. A quick Google search turned up this recipe, which someone worked out from the D, D, & D episode itself.
The basic process is like any other French toast. The batter is heavy cream (we used Snowville whole milk), sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and nutmeg. We skipped the nutmeg because of some family members’ aversion to it, although I’m sure you could doll this batter up with any spices you like. The recipe calls for Texas toast – we just thick sliced some white bread from Giant Eagle. Then you crush up some Captain Crunch, give the bread a bath in the batter, roll it in the cereal, and throw it on the griddle!
After a few misfires, we had it down pat. To borrow a family phrase, “How bad can it be?” I mean, we’re talking French toast… with Captain Crunch.
A couple things that we learned…
1. keep your pan/griddle/flat top at a medium-low heat. The recipe recommends 3 minutes per side, and that worked for us. But if the griddle’s too hot, the cereal will burn. You want it carmelized.
2. soak the bread in the batter a little bit, but not too long. That way the cereal sticks to the bread better, and you’ll bet a more custardy inside. But if soaks too much, the inside gets mushy.
3. you have to be hands-on when dipping the bread in the cereal. Press the battered bread into the crunch, sprinkle it on, rub it in.
4. feel free to press the toast onto the griddle a little bit with your spatula. We found that that cooked the insides a little more, and helped formed a solid shell around the toast.
We served it with a little bit of real Pennsylvania maple syrup, although you don’t need much. There’s sugar in the batter, and… well, you’re working with caramelized Captain Crunch here. Enjoy – and let me know if you try it!