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Hungry Girl Today: 11.03.11
We're breaking down the essentials needed to make French toast, HG-style! Take notes and get hungry...
The Ingredient Basics
Light bread - Look for bread with about 45 calories and 2g fiber per slice -- white, wheat... whatever you like best. Our number-one pick is Sara Lee's Delightful line. You can also get unconventional with things like light hot dog buns and 100-calorie flat sandwich buns.
Fat-free liquid egg substitute - For two to three slices of bread, 1/3 cup should do the trick for dunking 'n coating. Egg Beaters Original is our go-to product, but whichever similar egg sub you prefer is A-OK. (Egg whites work too.)
Cinnamon - This is pretty much calorie-free, so if you're a cinnamon freak, go nuts! We use 1/2 teaspoon, and we like our stuff pretty cinnamon-y... More than that might be overkill.
Vanilla extract - Half a teaspoon is all it takes for a hint of vanilla flavor. If you add too much, your food may get a weird, alcohol-like taste. Feeling tropical? Add coconut extract instead!
Sweetener - One packet or a teaspoon of granulated sweetener is all you need to sweeten your egg mixture. You can go with a no-calorie sweetener like Splenda or Truvia, or just use real sugar for 16 calories per teaspoon. We like to top our toast with a dusting of powdered sugar -- only 10 calories a teaspoon!
Nonstick spray - Mist it over your skillet to keep your stuff from sticking. You don't need to use much.
Light whipped butter or light buttery spread - This is for flavor, not for keeping your French toast from sticking to the skillet. About two teaspoons is all you need to infuse your b-fast with some buttery taste. Our choice is Brummel & Brown, but any spreadable butter with about 45 calories per tablespoon fits the bill.
The How-To in a Nutshell
1. Mix egg substitute, cinnamon, and vanilla extract in a wide bowl. If you like, add sweetener. Set aside.
2. Bring a skillet sprayed with nonstick spray to medium-high heat on the stove. Add butter and allow it to coat the bottom of the skillet.
3. Meanwhile, coat bread on all sides with the egg mixture.
4. Once butter has melted, place egg-coated bread in the skillet. Cook until golden brown, 1 - 2 minutes per side. Plate and add your toppings of choice. TADA!
At IHOP, an order of Original French Toast has 920 calories and 50g fat. The Stuffed French Toast? 900 - 1,050 calories and 39g fat. Cinn-a-Stack French Toast? 1,120 calories and 54g fat. And none of these stats includes sides. Ugh!
Syrups & spreads - Go classic with things like sugar-free pancake syrup and sugar-free or low-sugar fruit preserves. Get indulgent with some fat-free/light caramel dip or light chocolate syrup.
Fillings - If you want to stuff and stack a couple of slices before French toasting, we've got tips. Start with a creamy base like fat-free cream cheese (add a bit of sweetener) or The Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss cheese. Then get creative with the extras! Mini chocolate chips? Sure, just measure 'em; a teaspoon is perfect. Reduced-fat peanut butter? Yup, but just a bit. Pumpkin? Totally! Or go the savory route with Canadian bacon or extra-lean ham. Seal it up like a sandwich, and French toast away. SO GOOD!
Fun topping ideas - Powdered sugar (just a sprinkle), shredded coconut (about a teaspoon), fruit (fresh or thawed from frozen), fat-free whipped topping... The possibilities are endless!
Cannoli-Stuffed French Toast Nuggets - Dessert meets breakfast! This tasty treat will blow your mind.
French-Toasted Waffles - Can't decide what you want for breakfast? This recipe serves up the best of both worlds!
Overstuffed Peanut Butter 'n Banana French Toast - This dish is decadent enough to make you feel like you're being bad, but its stats are impressive enough that you'll know you're not...
The Big Apple French Toast Casserole - Unconventional? Sure. Delicious? You bet!
And for an ENTIRE chapter of French toast recipes, check out Hungry Girl 1-2-3: The Easiest, Most Delicious, Guilt-Free Recipes on the Planet. Weeeee! (Or should we say, "Ouiiiiii!"?)
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CHEW ON THIS:
Buddies, it's National Sandwich Day (November 3rd)! If you're in the mood for b-fast but don't want French toast, we suggest you give our Sausage-Stuffed Breakfast Grilled Cheese a whirl. And now that we're thinking about it, we want one too...
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