Dipping these simple sandwiches of white bread and Nutella, the Italian chocolate-and-hazel nut spread, in egg before grilling turns them into luxurious stuffed French toast. Serve them for a special breakfast or decadent dessert, maybe with some raspberries, sliced strawberries, or sliced bananas and sweetened whipped cream on the side. Watch the sandwiches carefully-you want their outsides to caramelize, but not to bum. If your panini press is not reliably nonstick, spray it with cooking spray or brush it with melted butter before putting the sandwiches in.
Yield: Makes 2 sandwiches
Four 1-inch-thick slices brioche
¼ cup Nutella
2 large eggs
¼ cup half-and-half or milk
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat a panini or sandwich press according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Spread 2 pieces of bread with the Nutella.
Top each piece with another piece of bread.
Whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla in a shallow bowl. Place one of the sandwiches in the bowl and then turn it to completely coat it with the egg mixture. Transfer to a platter. Let stand for a few seconds.
Put the sandwiches on the press, pull the top down, and cook until they are golden and crisp, 4 to 6 minutes, depending on how hot your machine is. Carefully remove from the press, dust with confectioners’ sugar, and serve immediately.