French toast is a breakfast dish we all know and love. You can make it savory or sweet. You can even make it savory and sweet! It’s a versatile dish, welcoming an array of toppings and pairings. Why are we diving into the history of French toast, you ask? We’re getting ready to celebrate National French Toast Day on November 28th! So when you’re searching for “food near me,” stop by Swanton Street Diner and celebrate all the great things about French toast!
So, we hate to be the bearer of bad news, but French toast isn’t actually French. Instead, it originates from Ancient Rome around the early 5th century AD. The first “French toast” was called pan dulcis, meaning “sweet bread.” It was initially made by soaking bread in a mixture of milk and beaten eggs and then frying it in butter or oil.
Over time the dish developed a few more names and versions as it made its way around the world. In 15th-century England, under the rule of Henry V, French toast was extremely popular. Instead, it was known as “pain perdu,” which translates to “lost bread.” It was very similar to how the Romans did it, but stale or hard bread was used instead of fresh bread. This was their way of prolonging the shelf life of stale bread and making use of it.
Why is it called French toast?
The modern French toast that we eat today was invented in 1724 in Albany, New York, by an innkeeper named Joseph French. It most likely would have been called “French’s toast,” but some say Mr. French was not the best at grammar and forgot to include an apostrophe.
Pairings and Toppings
Though French toast has been around for many centuries, the breakfast dish hasn’t changed much at all. It’s still made the same way by dipping bread in a milk and egg mixture and then fried in oil or butter. Some may make adjustments to their own preference, however!
You can top French toast with various things like blueberries, strawberries, peaches, or bananas. Things like powdered sugar, chocolate chips, and caramel are great options to make it even sweeter! If you want to make it more savory, try pairing it with sides like hash browns, bacon, or scrambled eggs. You can’t go wrong with this dish!
If You’re Searching for “Food Near Me,” Come to Visit Us!
At Raff’s Café, we have a little something for everyone. We can do it all, whether you’re into the sweet stuff or a hearty and savory breakfast. If you’re craving some French toast after this post, you can find us at 72 Swanton Street in Winchester, MA!