With an egg, a splash of milk, and a dash of vanilla extract, you can turn stale, lifeless bread into a sweet and indulgent breakfast that you will actually want to drag yourself out of bed for in the morning.
The name French toast is actually a bit of a misnomer. The earliest indications of the pan-fried, custard-soaked bread come from a collection of Latin recipes called the Apicius collection in the fourth century.
The French version of this sweet treat, called pain perdu, is served as both a breakfast and a dessert item, and is typically made with brioche-style bread.
But we are playing fast and loose with the classic pain perdu rules. The broader category of French toast (luckily for our stomachs) includes any dish of bread dipped in custard, and then baked, fried, or grilled to perfection. From there you can sprinkle with powdered sugar, dust with spices, douse with maple syrup, or slather with Nutella. Any combination of the aforementioned will do the trick.
To enjoy our favorite morning toast, we have rounded up 24 French toast recipes that celebrate this simple griddled dish in its many, many iterations.
Angela Carlos contributed to this roundup.