First things first: these french toast dark chocolate ganache sandwiches are spectacular. They are crusty, yet custardy, deeply chocolate-y without being too sweet, and super easy and fast to assemble and cook. They make a great, kind of unique, dessert . . . or breakfast . . . or lunch . . . or midnight snack. I’m not going to tell you they’ll keep indefinitely, cause that would be a lie, but, you know, they are not half bad at room temp (two of my testers were at work, aka, elementary school) when I made these one morning, and hours later when they ate them, i was rewarded with much praise, and heard nary a complaint).
The first french toast chocolate sandwich I ever made (and, honestly, the last one I made until now) was eons ago from a Martha Stewart recipe in a 2005 issue of the now-defunct Everyday Food (a magazine I miss, by the way). I only made the Everyday Food sandwiches once, and although I loved them, I had no one to share them with at the time, as I wasn’t living with any age-appropriate testers (except for a husband who doesn’t care much for french toast). I wasn’t sure, therefore, if I had discovered some truly amazing crowd pleaser, or if it was just me super digging some treat that others might scoff at. Recently(ish), however, I saw this Food52 chocolate sandwich recipe, and was reminded of those sandwiches and inspired to try my hand at my own version. This time with the intention of getting some feedback.
Research was in order (duh), and although I discovered several grilled chocolate sandwiches, such as this recipe from Food & Wine, I did not come upon any made with french toast — an element of the Everyday Food recipe that I just loved ever since discovering the secret to the art of french toast cookery, which is to grill your egg-soaked bread in hot oil, not melted butter. However, what these grilled sandwiches lacked in terms of bread prep (they were merely prepared in a pan with butter, as you would a grilled cheese), they made up for when it came to their chocolate filling. Whereas the Everyday Food recipe merely called for sandwiching pieces of a chocolate bar between two slices of bread, these other sandwiches called for smearing the bread with ganache, and I kind of think I can stop right here. You get it, right? How it suddenly came to me that it would be completely over the top and amazing to combine the french toast from one recipe with the ganache of the others? And how the minute I realized that that was what I was going to do, I was kind of floating around in a haze of recipe development bliss? We’re on the same page here, right?
So that is what I did, and that is how the french toast ganache sandwich was born. The recipe couldn’t be easier and the results couldn’t be tastier. And this time there was plenty of feedback, and all of it enthusiastic, so, phew, it wasn’t just me back in the day digging some crazy concoction: The french toast chocolate combo really is the bomb.
French Toast Sandwiches With Dark Chocolate Ganache And Sea Salt
For the ganche
- 12 ounces dark chocolate
- 1 cup heavy cream
For the french toast
- 2 large eggs
- 1 yolk
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 tbsp light brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 8 slices challah bread sliced about 3/4 to 1-inch thick
- Canola oil for frying
- confectioners' sugar
- Maldon sea salt
To make the ganache
- Place the chocolate in a medium-sized bowl and set aside. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until bubbles just begin to form around the outside edge of the pot. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, making sure to cover all of the chocolate in cream. Let the mixture sit for 1 to 5 minutes. Gently stir the mixture from the center with a whisk or fork, until the ganache is shiny, thick and uniform. Place in the refrigerator to thicken, stirring occasionally, about five minutes, while you prepare the french toast.
To make the french toast
- in a shallow medium-sized dish (like an 8x8-inch Pyrex) combine the eggs, yolk, and vanilla, and whisk until combined. Add the heavy cream, sugar, and salt, and whisk again, until the custard is uniform and frothy.
- Remove the ganache from the refrigerator (you want it to be spreadable and not too runny; if it is still super thin, keep it in the refrigerator for a few more minutes. Keep in mind, however, that it will go from thin to thick quite quickly). Spread a thick layer of ganache on all eight slices of bread.
- Cover the bottom of a skillet in a 1/4-inch of canola oil (or another neutral oil of your liking) and heat the oil over medium to medium high heat.
- Sandwich the ganache covered bread together, making 4 sandwiches. Working one sandwich at a time, begin by dipping each side into the custard, allowing the extra to drip off. Transfer the sandwich to the pan with the heated oil, and grill the sandwich, about two minutes per side, pressing down on the sandwich with a spatula while it cooks. It is done when both sides are lightly browned and crisp.
- Remove the sandwich to a paper-towel lined plate and repeat until all four sandwiches are done. Cut the sandwiches in half and dust with confectioners' sugar and Maldon sea salt. Eat immediately (or don't and enjoy room temp sandwiches).