Blackberry-Stuffed French Toast


  • 1

    pint/285 grams fresh or frozen blackberries, raspberries or blueberries (about 2 heaping cups)

  • cup plus 3 tablespoons/100 grams granulated sugar

  • 1

    tablespoon lemon juice

  • Kosher salt

  • 3

    large eggs

  • ¼

    cup/60 milliliters whole milk

  • 1 to 2

    tablespoons dark rum, bourbon or brandy

  • 2

    teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 8

    slices brioche or white sandwich bread (each about 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick)

  • Unsalted butter, for frying

  • Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting


  1. Place the berries, 1/3 cup/70 grams granulated sugar, the lemon juice and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small saucepan. Roughly crush the berries with the back of a fork to help release some of their juices.
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover with a lid and cook at a strong simmer, stirring occasionally to ensure the berries never stick to the bottom and burn, until the sauce has thickened and reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool and thicken for another 10 minutes.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk to combine the eggs, milk, rum, vanilla, a pinch of salt and the remaining 3 tablespoons/30 grams granulated sugar; set aside.
  4. Lay 4 pieces of bread out on a plate or tray, and divide the cooled fruit across the bread (about 2 to 3 tablespoons each), leaving roughly 3/4-inch of space around the edges of the bread. Top with the remaining 4 slices of bread, and press down lightly to adhere.
  5. Heat a large frying pan or griddle over medium-high and melt enough butter to coat the bottom. Just as the butter begins to bubble, float a sandwich on top of the egg batter for 3 seconds, then flip to soak the other side for 3 more seconds. Hold the sandwich over the bowl for 10 seconds to allow any excess batter to drip off, then transfer it to the hot pan. Repeat with as many sandwiches as will fit in your pan; you may need to do this in batches. Cook until deep golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes per side, adding butter to the pan as needed. Transfer to plates and dust generously with confectioners’ sugar.