There are plenty of days when my fridge looks like an apothecary. Bottles, jars, and containers in all shapes and sizes, each half-filled with leftovers from my wily experiments.
Look, here's some coconut milk from that choconut pudding!
And over there! A quarter jar of extra toasted pistachio pesto!
Now, wait, what's in there? Uh, egg whites? Wow. I don't even want to think about how long those have been in there. And that must be broth. (No, not that one -- that's vinaigrette -- the one behind it.) Is that from last weekend, or the weekend before?
I can never seem to use a full can of pumpkin either. Most recipes call for a cup or a half cup and with 15 ounces in a can you're always cursed with just a little left over. Not much of a pumpkin person until this year, I've suddenly been making muffins and quick breads and cute little pies like pumpkin's my hot new boyfriend and if I don't spend as much time with him as possible he's going to dump me for someone way cuter.
Not a big deal when compared with war, disease, and market collapse, but at least this problem has a very simple solution.
Recipe for Pumpkin French Toast Sticks
With its soothing color and delicate flavor, this French toast is a slight departure from the ordinary, but it's still familiar and comforting, especially for kids. (The novel shape makes the sticks ideal for dipping in syrup.) Be sure to brown each strip well on both sides and to cook it until it feels firm to the touch.
Serves 2 to 3
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon canned pure pumpkin
1/2 cup low-fat milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon canola oil (divided), or nonstick spray
4 slices firm sandwich bread, white or wheat, stacked and cut into 4 strips (yielding 16 strips total)
Maple syrup, for serving
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together all ingredients except bread.
Heat a heavy nonstick pan over medium heat. If using butter and oil, add 1 teaspoon of each and swirl to coat. If using spray, coat pan with spray.
When pan is hot, dip bread strips into custard mixture and press to coat. Don't keep submerged for more than a few seconds or bread will become mushy. Cook 6 to 8 strips at a time, about 5 minutes total, turning once or twice for even browning. The French toast is done when it feels firm to the touch.
Repeat with remaining bread strips and custard, adding 1 teaspoon each of butter and oil (if using) or spray before cooking each batch.
Serve with maple syrup.