Chefs Eat Toasties Too, published this month, is described as Purchese’s ode to one of his favourite foods: the toasted sandwich. It contains 50 recipes for toasties ranging from gorgonzola, pumpkin, maple-cured bacon and caramelised onion with maple syrup, to coffee-infused French toast with banana, nut crumple and yoghurt.
He writes in this recipe introduction: “Lamingtons have become a big part of my life – admittedly too big. However, these simply constructed, but difficult-to-master, classics are something to celebrate.”
Lamington pain perdu – ooooh, look at you!
Get as much jam as poss into these, as it is key. We are using a variation on a classic French toast method here again, and brioche is always the best option bread-wise for this. If you are a little bit better than everyone else, then you can call this a pain perdu – but just check yo-self. This is just a sandwich book after all. Try to use a chocolate block instead of melts (buttons) as you need to grate some of it at the end.
Prep time: 45 minutes (plus chilling)
Toasting method: Pan
Bread: four 5cm slices brioche loaf, crusts removed and trimmed to 5cm cubes
100g dark chocolate, plus extra for grating
150ml full-cream (whole) milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Pinch of salt flakes
100g icing (confectioners’) sugar
50g butter, softened
50g raspberry jam
50g fresh coconut
80ml (⅓ cup) thickened (whipping) cream, to serve
30g (¼ cup) fresh raspberries, to serve
1/ Put the brioche cubes in a sealed container and place them in the refrigerator for 1 hour to dry out and harden up (this will help with soaking). Put the chocolate in a bowl.
2/ Put the milk in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat. Melt half the chocolate and reserve the remaining chocolate for the end. Pour the scalded milk over the melted chocolate and stir to combine, then add the eggs, salt and 20g of the icing sugar. Mix well together with a whisk or fork and then strain through a sieve into a shallow dish.
3/ Place the brioche cubes in the dish to soak. Soak the cubes for 15 minutes and then flip them after 15 minutes to get maximum coverage. Remove the brioche cubes from the dish and place them on a wire rack over a tray to catch the drips. Leave for 10 minutes to drain.
4/ Heat the softened butter in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat until just melted. Dust each drained cube of brioche with the remaining icing sugar. Add the cubes of brioche to the pan and cook them for a couple of minutes on each side until golden brown and caramelised. Flip each cube and cook until golden and caramelised on the other side.
5/ Remove the brioche cubes from the pan and place them in a dish. Cut each cube in half and spoon some raspberry jam into the centre of each, then top off with the lid. Grate dark chocolate over the lamingtons while they are still warm, and finish by grating the coconut over, using a microplane. Serve with cream and fresh raspberries.
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