French Toast with Berry Butter
1 pound unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup raspberries
¾ cup blackberries
2 cups half-and –half
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
1 loaf crusty bread (baguette, French loaf, sourdough)
Warmed pure maple syrup
Sifted powder sugar
First, make the berry butter in 2 different batches; whip ½ pound of the butter until fluffy. Add the raspberries then switch your attachment to a paddle and beat it on low speed for only a few rotations. The berries will break up immediately. Lay a long sheet of plastic wrap on top of the long sheet of aluminum foil, then turn out the berry butter in a long log shape. Carefully roll the butter inside the plastic wrap, then inside the foil. Twist the edges of the foil. Continue twisting the edges in opposite direction to create pressure. This will force the butter into a uniform cylindrical shape. When you are it as tight as you can get it, place it in the fridge for several hours to firm up. Repeat the process with the blackberries.
Separate the eggs and store the whites for another use. Pour the half-and-half into a large dish with the egg yolks and granulated sugar, then add the vanilla and lemon zest and whisk it together. Throw in a couple of pieces of bread at time, turning them over and allowing them to completely absorb the liquid. Remove them from the dish and set them aside. When you are ready, melt plenty of butter in a skillet over medium heat, then cook the French toast until its golden brown and slightly crisp.
Remove the berry butter from the fridge and unwrap the ends. Slice off one of each variety and place them on each serving. Drizzle the top with some warm maple syrup. Sift some powdered sugar on top if desired.