We find ourselves in very unusual times: as we know, because of coronavirus, quarantine continues. So, despite the arrival of spring and Easter festivities, we have to conduct ourselves responsibly and stay home. Just yesterday, Easter Sunday, I was thinking about happy moments from my Erasmus period in Seville, back in 2017; a time when everyday life flowed normally and we were free to go out, travel and explore the whole world whilst coming into contact with other cultures. Remembering the past, I decided to spend my afternoon cooking milk torrijas, a traditional Spanish recipe of the Easter period.
By Monica Nicol / 27.04.2020
But, what are torrijas? They are slices of bread soaked in milk, wine or syrup, breaded in egg and then fried in oil. The recipe is easy, quick and cheap. You will only need a few simple ingredients so you probably won’t even need to go out to the supermarket. What a perfect recipe for quarantine! There are also different types of torrijas, as, being a traditional home-made sweet, everyone can give their own recipes a personal touch.
In addition to milk, wine or syrup, torrijas can also be chocolate, honey flavoured or caramelised… There are even savoury, vegetarian and vegan versions.
Today, we will see how milk torrijas are prepared.
Ingredients for 6-8 torrijas:
– 6-8 slices of bread (if you don’t have the specific bread required for torrijas, you can use a loaf of stale bread: preferably with thin crust and compact crumb);
– 1 l of milk;
– 3 tbsp of white or cane sugar;
– 1 cinnamon stick, or ground cinnamon;
– Olive oil;
– 1 vanilla pod or 1 sachet of vanilla flavouring. Alternatively, a lemon or orange peel;
– 2 or 3 eggs;
– Ground cinnamon or sugar to garnish.
Firstly, cut 6-8 slices of bread of about one inch length and place them in a baking tray.
Pour the milk into a pot and aromatise with a cinnamon stick (or ground cinnamon), a vanilla pod (or a sachet of vanilla) and three tablespoons of cane sugar. You could also use the peel of half a lemon or orange instead of vanilla.
Mix well. When the mixture starts to boil, turn off the stove and allow to cool before filtering it into a strainer.
Dip the slices of bread and leave them to soak for about 30-40 minutes in order to absorb the liquid and soften.
Break the eggs into a bowl and bread the slices of bread.
Put the pan with the olive oil on the stove and when it’s heated, fry the slices of bread for a few minutes, turning them occasionally until brown.
Drain in order to remove the excess oil and when done, dust with cane sugar or ground cinnamon.
That’s it! The torrijas are ready: they can be eaten hot or cold, alone or garnished with sliced dried or fresh fruit. Alternatively, they can be enjoyed with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.