Did you know that French Toast may not be be French at all, but Roman? A recipe was found in a cookbook from the 1st century AD Roman cookbook called Apicius.
The people of Belgium and France call it pain perdu (“lost bread”) since it is a way to use stale, “lost” bread.
A similar dish, suppe dorate, was popular in England during the Middle Ages, although the English might have learned it from the French Normans, who had a dish called tostees dorees. However, according to IHOP, the first written mention of the dish comes from the court of Henry V of England (1413–1422) and is called Dulcia Domestica:
1 cup Milk
8 slices white bread crusts removed (opt)
And here is the original recipe from the Apicius cookbook that dates from the 1st century A.D.:
Break fine white bread, crust removed, into rather large pieces which soak in milk [and beaten eggs], fry in oil, cover with honey and serve.
Modern version: Beat eggs and milk together. Dip bread in batter. Fry in hot skillet, turning after each side browns. Serve hot with warmed honey. Sprinkle with cinnamon if desired.
Per serving (without honey): 235 calories, 12 g protein, 26 g carbohydrates, 9 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 221 mg cholesterol, 329 mg sodium.
Source: Kurt A. Nemes, "The Oldest Living Cookbook," The Washington Post FOOD Section, 9/14/94. Typed by Linda Howard. From: Linda Howard Date: 09-15-94