Strawberry Hazelnut Stuffed French Toast

Strawberry hazelnut stuffed french toast

Looking for a special breakfast to make for Valentine’s day this year?  Or a special breakfast to make any time of the year?  Let me introduce you to this strawberry hazelnut stuffed french toast.  Now, I’m not usually one to go for this type of breakfast food – I’m more of an oatmeal or eggs type of girl.  But both my husband and I were particularly smitten with this dish.

Strawberry hazelnut stuffed french toast

It all started when I was working on some Valentine’s day recipes to share here with you.  Of course I had plenty of ideas for dessert, but I wanted to include a special breakfast or brunch item.  The pints of strawberries at our local grocery store have looked incredible lately (resulting in me buying way too many), and I had half a tub of mascarpone sitting in my refrigerator just begging to be used.  That’s when this idea popped into my head.  And let me tell you, it was a good one.

Strawberry hazelnut stuffed french toast

This french toast is packed full of fresh strawberries, sweetened-up mascarpone and hazelnuts.  Finish it off with a light dusting of confectioners’ sugar, additional strawberries and extra hazelnuts for a bit of crunch, and you have a fairly simple yet not your everyday breakfast treat.  This french toast was so delicious on it’s own that we didn’t even feel the need to add maple syrup.

So whip this up for that special someone, or quite frankly, for yourself!  You deserve it : )

Yield: 3 to 4 servings

Strawberry Hazelnut Stuffed French Toast

Recipe for strawberry hazelnut stuffed french toast. French toast stuffed with strawberries, mascarpone and hazelnuts. Finished with confectioners sugar.

Ingredients:

For the filling:

  • ¾ cup sliced strawberries (about 6 berries)
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 ounces mascarpone, room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup chopped hazelnuts

For the french toast:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 thick slices french bread (about 1 inch thick)

For garnish:

  • confectioners’ sugar
  • sliced strawberries
  • chopped hazelnuts

Directions:

  1. To make the filling – in a small bowl add the sliced strawberries and ½ tablespoon of the sugar. Toss gently then set aside to sit for about 10 minutes. In another small bowl, mix together the mascarpone, the remaining ½ tablespoon sugar, vanilla and hazelnuts. Gently fold in the strawberries.
  2. To make the french toast – In a shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and vanilla. For each slice of bread, carefully make a deep cut in the center of the top crust of each piece (to form a pocket), making sure not to go all the way through to the other side. Gently spoon about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the filling into the pocket (you’ll want to divide the filling evenly among the 6 slices of bread). Gently press the top of the pocket so that it is slightly closed.
  3. Place a nonstick skillet over medium heat. When hot, spray the pan with nonstick cooking spray. Take a slice of bread and soak in the egg mixture on each side for a few seconds. Shake off the excess mixture then place in the skillet. Cook about 1 to 2 minutes per side, until golden brown and crispy. Repeat with each slice of bread, spraying the skillet with additional nonstick cooking spray if needed.
  4. For garnish – lightly dust each piece with confectioners’ sugar, additional sliced strawberries and chopped hazelnuts. Serve with maple syrup, if desired.

Adapted from Savory Sweet Life.