Louisiana Sweet Potato French Toast With Pecan Honey-Butter

Louisiana Sweet Potato French Toast With Pecan Honey-Butter

Serves 4. Recipe is by Patrick Ashton, of New Orleans.

Sweet potato filling:

1 large Louisiana sweet potato

2 ozs. cane syrup

4 ozs. cream cheese

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tbls. cinnamon

1/2 nut nutmeg, grated with microplane

Pecan honey butter:

1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped

1 cup unsalted butter

1 cup honey

French toast:

8 slices hearty white bread or 4 slices thick-sliced challah

2 egg yolks

2 tbls. brown sugar

1 tbl. cinnamon

1/2 nut nutmeg, grated

1 tbl. vanilla

1 tsp. kosher salt

2 tbls. unsalted butter, melted

1 cup milk

1/2 tbl. unsalted butter

Powdered sugar, optional

Shaved chocolate, optional

1. Make filling: Peel and cut sweet potato into 1/2-inch chunks. Roast in microwave in a covered microwave-safe dish with a few drops of water until fork-tender (8 to 10 minutes).

2. Combine sweet potato and all filling ingredients in food processor or blender and process until smooth and consistency of creamy peanut butter. Spread 1 or 2 tablespoons of filling between two pieces of bread. For a fancier presentation, cut a pocket in a thick slice of challah and pipe filling into pocket. Set aside.

3. To make pecan honey butter: Chop pecans and add to a sauté pan over low heat and toast for a few minutes.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add honey and pecans. Heat until mixture starts to bubble, stirring periodically, then lower heat and keep warm.

4. For French toast: Combine egg yolks, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and vanilla in a flat-bottom dish. Whisk together until dry ingredients are fully moistened and combined with wet ingredients. Warm milk in microwave until warm (not hot), then add milk and melted butter to egg-yolk mixture. Whisk until combined well.

5. Prepare griddle or large skillet with 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter over medium heat. Dip toast sandwiches in custard mixture and soak for 15 to 20 seconds on each side. Cook on griddle or pan for 3 to 4 minutes per side until golden brown. Remove and slice into three slices diagonally; arrange on plates. Top with honey-butter. Garnish with powdered sugar and/or shaved chocolate, if using.