That Puck of the pantry, chef David Burke of the David Burke Fromagerie in Rumson, sets sail with these whimsical loaves of French Toast shaped like the doomed ocean liner, complete with three cookie smokestacks.
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Titanic French Toast with Three Jams
· 6 small loaves home-style bread or brioche
· 4 cups heavy cream
· ½ cup fresh orange juice
· ¼ cup Grand Marnier
· 6 large eggs
· 1 cup granulated sugar
· 1 tsp ground cinnamon
· ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
· approx 6 cups vegetable oil
· 18 Pirouettes or other commercially prepared rolled, crisp cookies
· ½ cup orange marmalade
· ½ cup raspberry or strawberry jam
· ½ cup apricot jam
· approx ¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
· approx 2 cups fresh berries, hulled or stemmed
· approx 1 ½ cups strawberry or raspberry syrup, optional
1) Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
2) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
3) Using a bread knife, trim the crust off each loaf of bread, leaving a neat rectangle about 6 inches long.
4) Using an apple corer or a small sharp knife, make 3 holes in the top of each loaf equidistant from each other. Set aside.
5) Whisk together the cream, orange juice, and Gran Marnier in a deep bowl.
6) Add the eggs and whisk to combine.
7) Add the granulated sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg and continue whisking until the sugar has dissolved.
8) One at a time, dip the loaves into the cream mixture to soak well. Place the loaves on a platter or baking sheet.
9) Heat the vegetable oil in a deep-fat fryer over medium-high heat to 360 degrees on a candy thermometer.
10) One at a time, place the soaked loaves into the hot fat and fry, making sure that the loaf is submerged in the fat, for about 4 minutes, or until the outside is crisp and golden.
11) Remove from the fat and place on a triple layer of paper towels to drain. Place the fried loaf on the prepared baking sheet and into the preheated oven to keep it warm while you continue frying the remaining loaves.
12) When ready to serve, place a loaf on each of six serving plates. Place a Pirouette into each of the three holes on top of each loaf. Fill each cookie with a different jam or fruit.
13) Place the confectioners’ sugar in a fine sieve and tap gently against the edge of the sieve, holding it over each plate, to dust the plate with sugar.
14) Sprinkle berries around the edge of each plate, and serve immediately with the optional fruit syrup passed on the side, if desired.
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