Ladurée Savory Challenge
Recipe: French Toast with Shrimp
Alright, alright, alright.
(5 pop culture points to whoever calls that quote.)
It’s day 2 of the Ladurée Savory Challenge, which means it’s time for the first recipe! (Pretending that my nervousness is just excitement is totally working for me, I highly recommend it.)
Into the Kitchen!
Let’s crack this bad boy open.
Now, the cookbook is divided into the following categories:
- Brunch with Friends
- Elegant Picnic
- Lunch: Variations on a Classic Theme
- Evening in the Ladurée Bar
- Light Dinner
- Gala Dinner
I figure I’m gonna try to make at least one recipe per category, to get the full experience. I’m also only attempting recipes that come with pictures because, well, I’ve never eaten any of this before, I need to know how things look. Since the weekend is about to start, I figure we begin with everyone’s favorite meal: Brunch!
If you’re following along at home, turn your wonderful books to page 10, because today I’m going to make the very first recipe in the book: Petit pain perdu de langoustines aux amandes, which in English translates to French Toast, Langoustines and Almonds.
(Btw, the selective usage of caps lock wasn’t me being creative, it’s in the book. I’m but a young apprentice of the French culinary arts and their funky capitalizations.)
First things first: I did have to make substitutions. Nut allergies are a widespread evil in my family, so I had to remove the almonds, and the langoustines were impossible to find, so I added shrimp. I also couldn’t get my hands on brioche bread, so little toast sized bread it is! In total, I’m not using 3 out of 12 ingredients.
This is what I call a good start
Following the recipe’s instructions, I started by making the pink shrimp saucy thingy (technical term). I put a tablespoon of olive oil in a saucepan and added the shrimp heads.
After adding diced tomatoes, I let it simmer for a bit (the recipe said 10 minutes, mine looked ready after maybe 4), and then added heavy cream for some more simmering (again, the recipe said 30 minutes, if I had done more than 10 the whole thing would have evaporated).
I added a bit of tomato paste (didn’t remember to do it on screen, oops), and voila! Shrimp saucy thingy done in less than 20 minutes. That was hella easy, and the finger test (what? Everyone does that, right?) tells me it’s also delicious.
Ready for step 2!
Step 2 involved almonds, so… SKIP!
Step 3 was make the French toast portion of the dish. Now, I’ve never made French toast before (it’s not a thing where I’m from), but the whole process was also surprisingly easy. Mix egg yolks with heavy cream, coat the bread, melt butter in a skillet (soooooo much more butter than I’d ever use, I shuddered my way through that bit), drop the bread in, let it fry. Simple enough.
(I’m not acknowledging the fact that I ruined the first two pieces and nearly burned the second two, MOVING ON.)
Step 4 was frying the langous-SHRIMP in some butter. Easy peasy.
Step 5 was prepping the salad portion. I’m not even sure dandelion greens are a thing that actually exists outside of this book, so I used arugula. Wait, that’s a 4th substitution! DAMNIT!
(I can’t recommend arugula enough, though, it’s the most fragrant salad green on earth, tastes amazing.)
Add lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and you’re good to go.
Then I just needed to assemble everything!
See, that wasn’t hard at all! I mean, it took me a good hour, I had to make 4 substitutions and my kitchen smells vaguely liked burned toast, BUT… I did it. I finished my first French recipe, my first Ladurée Savory recipe, the very first one in the book, and you know what?
I was damn delicious.
Level of difficulty: 3 out of 10, as decided by me.
Level of yumminess: 8 out of 10, as attributed by the fam.
Tomorrow: two takes on a brunch classic, as decided by the French. See you then!
Have you ever tried shrimp French toast? Or French toast in general? What’s your favorite type of French toast?