Recipe: Buttermilk French Toast & Rubarb Compote

As we've definitely mentioned before, we're drowning in a sea of fresh eggs - along with all the other backyard chicken owners out there. But, of course, we're not complaining! There are a seemingly infinite number of recipes that use eggs by the coop-full, and we're having a blast experimenting.

Lucky for us, we also have a glut of fantastic local bakeries in the area. One of our favorites, and oldest, is the Daily Bread Bakery. They make a ton of fantastic things - black bottom cupcakes, homemade oreos, granola... not to mention, one of the best basic chocolate cakes ever. 

But our current obsession is their classic challah bread. This buttery challah, toasted with a spoonful of jam, makes an amazing breakfast all on its own. But add a few bright eggs and some tangy buttermilk, and you've got the fixin's for some kick-ass french toast! So the other morning we took out a loaf, cut a few thick slices, cracked some eggs, and started cooking. Because we also have too many rhubarb stalks (detecting a theme here?) we made a quick compote to spoon on top along with our favorite Old Field Farm Syrup. Sweet, simple, and delicious - and we used up four eggs!

Buttermilk French Toast

+ 1 1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
+ 4 large eggs
+ 3 tablespoons sugar
+ 1/4 teaspoon salt
+ 12 (1/2-inch-thick) slices challah (from a 1-pound loaf; not end slices) 
+ 4 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided 

1. Preheat oven to 200°F. 
2. Whisk together buttermilk, eggs, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Pour into a large 4-sided sheet pan, then add bread in 1 layer and soak, turning occasionally, until bread has absorbed all liquid but is not falling apart, about 20 minutes.
3. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until foam subsides. Transfer 4 bread slices with a slotted spatula to skillet and cook, turning once, until slightly puffed and golden brown, about 3 minutes total. 
4. Transfer to a large shallow baking pan and keep warm in oven. Cook remaining bread in 2 batches, adding 1 1/2 tablespoon butter between batches.  

Rhubarb Compote

+ 4 cups 1/2-inch pieces fresh rhubarb
+ 1 1/2 cups sugar
+ 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1. Simmer the ingredients in a small saucepan until the rhubarb is soft, about 15 minutes.

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