Sweet And Crumby

Baking, a Love Story

Mom’s Banana French Toast and Kids “These Days”


Slow down. Has life been more than amped up lately? Are you running late wherever you go or are you being pulled in a hundred different directions? I hear ya. You are preaching to the choir. But one day soon, Saturday perhaps, you should just slow down and make this Banana French Toast. Or better yet, if you have kids, surprise them and set it out on the table on a SCHOOL DAY!

This recipe is a family favorite. I was a very lucky child growing up. Most mornings, I was served a hot breakfast of Banana French Toast, or an egg-y “Bubble” or some other equally delicious thing that was coming off my mother’s stove. I know that is rare, and that my life was and is blessed. My mom knew how important it was to start a kid’s day off right; with sunshine and bananas and the knowledge that you are loved.

After all, the onslaught of the day would hit us soon enough, and if we got to start our day with a smile and a warm breakfast, that would cushion life’s blows as they came our way on the school playground or in the classroom.

We always think that we, as parents, are facing SO MUCH. We are. I am the first to understand that little tidbit of information, BUT our kids are usually facing their battles as well. Trying to get along with friends or protecting themselves from bullies, trying to please teachers, just getting through the next math test and finding a place in the lunch area where they feel like they belong, that is a lot.

And if you are a teen, I think it’s even worse. You are being hit from all directions. Texting is never ending, and friends and parents can get a hold of you at any given minute. Don’t you remember what it was like to “go off the grid” as a teen…when there were no cell phones and your parents just had to rely on you telling them where you would be? I think there was a little air of mystery and freedom that we enjoyed as teens that has gone.

Teens are never off the grid anymore. They are on everyone’s grid…especially with Facebook, where one, little mistake or heartbreak can get blasted to hundreds of “friends”. Can you imagine if your little love notes you passed in fifth grade to the boy or girl at the next desk, were then brandished all over the social network?!!

I don’t think they quite know what is making them so anxious and stressed out, but I think their lives are just too complicated “these days” (I do know how old I sound, sigh). Our kids have it kind of rough if you ask me. And maybe, just maybe, a nice, hot breakfast would at least start the day off right and give them a little armor. We can show them that they are loved and they belong—at least  at their own kitchen table—and that they are very, very special even if the world tells them otherwise.

Mom’s Banana French Toast

Makes about 10-12 thick-cut slices of French Toast
Makes about 6 thick-cut slices of either preferably day-old Challah (best French toast bread ever) or French or Italian Loaf. Sandwich bread is fine but does not make as hearty a French Toast as bakery breads do.
4 large eggs
1/2 c. of whole milk or half and half
2 overly ripe banana
1 t. natural vanilla extract
1-2 t. cinnamon sugar (if you have some mixed or mix together in small bowl 1  3/4 t. sugar and 1/4 t. cinnamon)
About 1 T. of Canola oil and a pat of butter for the pan
Powdered sugar for dusting and fresh fruit such as sliced bananas, blueberries and strawberries for toppings.
1/3 c. toasted and roughly chopped walnuts for garnish if you like

To make the French Toast: First crack your eggs, one by one into a liquid measuring cup, pouring out each one into a shallow baking dish or pie plate (big enough for two slices of bread at least). Scramble your eggs with a fork. Add the milk, and combine with the fork.

Now is a good time to heat up your griddle. I like to put a pat (about a tablespoon) of butter and a tablespoon of Canola oil on the pan and turn it on medium heat. As the butter melts, use a paper towel to rub the melted butter and oil over the entire pan. Do no catch your paper towel on fire or burn your fingers. You can also use a basting brush if you would rather, but for me the towel works best.

You eventually need the griddle hot enough to cause it to sizzle when your drop a smidgen of batter on the outskirts of the pan, but not so hot it will burn on impact or burn ever. Let it continue to heat up while you finish the French Toast.

Put your ripe bananas in the dish with your egg mixture and mash with the fork right in the dish, leaving very small chunks of mashed banana in the dish. Add your vanilla and cinnamon and beat, mixing together with a fork, until all of the ingredients are well combined.  Take two-three slices of bread at a time and let one side sit in the egg mixture for about 30 seconds or until amply soaked in. Flip and soak the other side.

Place the slices on your hot griddle. Flip after a minute or so; you can peek with the spatula and see if it looks golden. I end up flipping a couple of times during the process and gently pressing down on the semi-cooked French Toast with my spatula so that any uncooked crevices are forced to touch the pan and cook. Unlike pancakes, this will not toughen them up.  I also like to slide each slice to the edge of the pan after cooking both sides and try to cook all edges of the slice so the thick ends are not uncooked and batter-like. If you are not working with a griddle which as flat-ish sides, you may want to stand up your French Toast on the four sides, letting each side that looks uncooked get cooked.  This gets the top and bottom and all of the edges nice and golden.

Start the process again until all of your slices are cooked. Serve with warmed syrup (add banana rum to your syrup if you want an added kick for the adults in the group) and dust them with a little powdered sugar. Top with fresh fruit and perhaps some roughly chopped toasted walnuts.

55 thoughts on “Mom’s Banana French Toast and Kids “These Days”

  1. This banana French toast is exquisite – your mum was exceptionally talented and obviously handed that gene down to you 🙂

    Choc Chip Uru
    Latest: Double Nutella Brownie Cheesecake Bites

  2. Such a great breakfast, Geni, but, to tell the truth, I’d be happy to have this for lunch or dinner, too! C’mon, what’s not to love? Cinnamon-flavored challah bread French toast with fresh fruit? It looks good and tastes even better! (The rum-infused syrup will be out little secret.)

  3. I can’t imagine growing up in the techy world that we live in, especially with the stresses of teen life. But I’m sure this french toast would make things a whole lot easier. 😉

    • I hope it does. But I really can’t even imagine what my teen life would have been life if I was always hooked up to a cell phone like an IV. These kids NEVER let them go. That seems kind of crazy to me to grow up like that, but here we are I guess and we either have to embrace it or be a recluse. I’m trying for “A”.

  4. Ooh, I’m going to make this for breakfast tomorrow. It looks delicious!

  5. You are the mom I want to be someday – we’re going to have to stay in touch, Geni, because I sure don’t know how I’m going to survive teenagers – and you seem to be right on track. I adore french toast, so I can’t wait to try this!!

    • Thank you. Mind you, my readers only get “my side” and my intentions, not necessarily what always plays out I’m afraid. Life tends to get in the way of good intentions but I do actually make breakfast a lot during the week. I figure it’s the one meal I can count on them home for.

  6. Oh that looks good. The bread is just toasted perfectly.

  7. I used to love it when my mom made French toast. Never tried it with the banana though.

  8. My husband and I talk about this all the time, how our childhood is totally different from our kids. Everything is public now, it’s a bit much and can be very stressful too! Actually my kids are in a talent show this week and one of the moms changed the routine last minute and she’s like okay kids we are going to post this on youtube. My son is upset and worried he’s going to forget the new last minute moves. Sad, huh. Well maybe I should make this for breakfast tomorrow to cheer him up! This sounds wonderful w/ challah bread!

  9. You just made my favorite french toast and didn’t invite me over for breakfast? LOL. I love this.l. I think my significant other will love this dish if I made it. He loves french toast too 🙂

  10. Egg day was always a Friday when we were kids and we really looked forward to that before heading off to school. Your moms French toast is brilliant – love the addition of fresh fruit.
    🙂 Mandy

  11. Gorgeous! I love french toast with fruit. I use so much less sugar when there is fruit and it tastes great.

  12. Yay! We’re adding this to our quest this year Geni (if you don’t mind). It looks fabulous. And I’m all about bananas with French toast. You’re making me terribly hungry right now. And I couldn’t agree with you more…I can’t imagine being a teen right now. I often joke with Mike about how I’m so thankful there weren’t cell phones and social networks when I was in college. Oh the horror at the thought! But you’re right, my kids will have to face that and I can’t even imagine. I better make them some French toast. 🙂

  13. It really is amazing how much social media and cell phones have changed the way kids grow up. My sister…my 16 year old sister…is on twitter. And facebook. And attached at the hip to her phone. It’s insane!

    I think we could all use some of htis french toast in the morning. breakfast of champions!

  14. There is absolutely NOTHING that compares to french toast made with challah bread. This looks and sounds heavenly to me! I wish I had you here to make this for us this morning.

    I have trouble even imagining how different teen lives are today. It is definitely a different world for them!

  15. I feel the same way about “kids these days”… I guess I’m already an old geezer. I just finished an excellent book about the role of social media and smart phones in our lives. I choose to live without a smart phone, and I’m not on facebook or twitter, but it’s a fascinating subject to me all the same. Things have certainly changed quickly for kids (and all of us) in the last decade! But no matter what happens to technology, banana french toast will always be a treat!

  16. I love french toast and yours looks extra special. I should be buying a bottle of freshly made maple syrup soon and it would be great on the toast.

  17. What a fantastic breakfast! I know my kids would love it. So would I!
    Much harder being a kid these days, such pressure. Or maybe I just look back with fondness and it was probably a tough time for kids back then, too! I know my mom worried for me as I worry for mine. I guess it’s all relative.

  18. This would definitely make my breakfast…o…I meant, my day! They look really yummy.

  19. What a perfect, old-fashioned way to let your kids know that they’re special!

  20. Yeah, this is going to be a good meal for me and my hubby for tomorrow.

    So, thanks for the recipe…

    Grandma Kat

  21. My eldest son is home with the flu and as soon as he up to holding down more than gatorade and jello will give this a try. I am sure this would make him feel very special. Have a great day and take time out for yourself!

  22. I love the addition of banana to this recipe! I echo your sentiments, Geni, I feel those moments of connection in the kitchen really keep our children on track and feeling loved. Even with an 18 and a 20 year old.. this is still the same. A quickly made egg with toast and a panic stricken university student calms down and beams…

  23. I’ll have to remember that it works with college kids too…good advice.

  24. What a delicious looking batch of French toast, and the fruit topping! Mmm. I’m already craving Saturday morning. Thanks for sharing, Geni. Also, I’m having a great giveaway today with four potential prize winners, so you should enter!

  25. i am coming to your house for breakfast my friend! WOW

  26. I hear you Geni, kids these days really have it rough
    They are missing out on many of the simple joys that made our childhood memorable and fun and balanced
    Now life is a mad race. One of my favorite qoutes that I read every day is
    Life is a journey not a race.
    I need to remind myself of that every day
    This french toast is a great way to remember it too 🙂

  27. Geniiiiiii you’re killing me!!! Can I come over for breakfast? I’ll be there in a jiff. 😉 I love French toast, but never make it at home…I’m not much of a breakfast person. But this…this is would splurge on. What a great family recipe.

  28. I don’t have french toast nearly enough. This sounds amazing, especially with the bananas. Although, bananas rarely last long enough in my house to get overripe. I have a dog that would never allow that to happen. She LOVES bananas.

  29. Thats a fruity french toast! Love it

  30. It looks fantastic, my mum used to make those for us also,,,,,,,,yummy

  31. I bet that french toast tastes just like love. Bananas and syrup and love. Looks amazing.

  32. My mom makes French toast only occasionally when we were young, so it’s a really special treat for us! I’m definitely making this on weekend, when I can finally slow down and take a break (:

  33. French Toast was one of my favorite treats as a kid. And my husband always gets mad at me for leaving my phone places or not turning it on…but I despise having people know where I am all the time.

  34. Oh Geni, I so agree! Our kids have a very complicated, on target life. All this social media has them in constant drama! Your mom reminds me of mine, always creating special memories and showing her love thru FOOD! If I make this for my son, I am guaranteed to see a great big smile on his face!!

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