Kid-friendly Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast Recipe - Sticky Fingers Cooking
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Recipe: Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

Recipe: Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

by Erin Fletter
Photo by Cris_mh/Shutterstock.com
prep time
10 minutes
cook time
10 minutes
makes
6-12 servings

Fun Food Story

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Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

Buenos días! A breakfast favorite at my house is traditional French crepes, and breakfast really is one of the only meals where it's truly acceptable to eat dessert. Pancakes, French toast, donuts—it's all breakfast food. Whenever my kids ask to make crepes with me for breakfast, and I'm feeling too lazy, we make tortilla churro French toast instead—flour tortillas dipped in an egg, milk, and vanilla mixture, pan-fried, then, while still warm, rolled in cinnamon sugar. It's not quite the same as crepes, but it's far less labor-intensive, and it's very, very good. Since everyone loves French toast, why not take it across the border and put a tasty twist on it? Our Mexican Churro French Toast both aligns and breaks with tradition for a novel brunch-worthy version of this favorite breakfast treat. Depending on your mood, it can be super sweet or not so sweet. And remember that the fruit salad salsa is very healthy! The "crema" is made from Greek yogurt, which also is beneficial. The outside is crunchy cinnamon goodness with light-as-air custardy goodness. It's like biting into a crunchy cloud. This is one of those nearly-perfect recipes. Easy, quick pantry ingredients, and it's scrumptious. And it's the least-heavy French toast ever. The reviews are in—all three kids give it (tres) thumbs up!

Happy & Healthy Cooking,

Chef Erin, Food-Geek-in-Chief

Fun-Da-Mentals Kitchen Skills

  • crack :

    to break open or apart a food to get what's inside, like an egg or a coconut.

  • dredge :

    to dip poultry, fish, or meat in flour, cornmeal, or breadcrumbs to help preserve moisture during cooking and give your food a crispy coating, also referred to as "breading."

  • stir-fry :

    to cook meat, fish, or vegetables rapidly over high heat while stirring briskly—used in Asian cooking.

  • whisk :

    to beat or stir ingredients vigorously with a fork or whisk to mix, blend, or incorporate air.

Equipment Checklist

  • Mixing bowls
  • Liquid measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • Whisk
  • Wooden spoon or spatula
  • Cutting board + kid-safe knife
  • Large skillet
  • Tongs
  • Serving plate
scale
1X
2X
3X
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7X

Ingredients

Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

  • 2 large eggs **(for EGG ALLERGY sub 1 mashed banana)**
  • 1/2 C milk **(for DAIRY ALLERGY sub dairy-free/nut-free milk)**
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 1/4 C sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 T butter
  • 6 (or more) flour tortillas **(for GLUTEN ALLERGY sub corn tortillas)**

Food Allergen Substitutions

Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

  • Dairy: Substitute dairy-free/nut-free milk for milk in Churro French Toast.
  • Egg: For 2 eggs in Churro French Toast, substitute 1 mashed banana. 
  • Gluten/Wheat: Substitute corn tortillas for flour tortillas for Churro French Toast.

Instructions

Mexican Tortilla Churro French Toast

1.
crack + whisk

Have your kid chefs crack 2 eggs into a medium mixing bowl. Add 1/2 cup milk and 1 tablespoon vanilla extract. Whisk together to combine while counting to 5 in Spanish: 1 uno (OO-noh), 2 dos (dohs), 3 tres (trehs), 4 cuatro (KWAH-troh), 5 cinco (SEEN-koh).

2.
mix + cut

In another bowl, have your kids mix together 1/4 cup sugar with 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Have your kids cut 6 (or more) tortillas into halves or fourths.

3.
melt + dip + fry

Parents heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat on your stovetop and melt 1 tablespoon butter or oil, swirling or brushing to coat the pan. Have your kids dip each tortilla into the egg mixture, cover both sides well, and shake off the excess. Parents place the coated tortillas on your hot skillet. Fry the tortillas for about 1 to 2 minutes on each side (tongs work great to turn the tortillas), until puffed and golden brown.

4.
cool + dredge

Cool the tortillas a bit and then have your kids dredge the cooked tortilla French toast in the cinnamon sugar mixture you made earlier. Set on a plate for serving with Fruit Salad Salsa and Whipped Cinnamon Yogurt "Crema" (see recipes).

Surprise Ingredient: Cinnamon!

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Photo by Geshas/Shutterstock.com

Hi!  I’m Cinnamon!

"Did you know that I'm a spice that comes from the inner bark of certain trees?! You can add me to both sweet and savory foods. Recipes generally call for ground cinnamon, but you can also use cinnamon sticks, dried strips of my bark that curl into a tube shape, to flavor apple cider, stews, curries, and more. Just don't forget to remove the stick before serving! And, what's more, I can make your kitchen and home smell wonderful!"

History

  • Some people say the best kind of cinnamon, referred to as the "true cinnamon" and called Ceylon, is native to an island southeast of India called Sri Lanka. It has a more subtle flavor than other types. The most common cinnamon in use today, though, is derived from Cassia, which originated in China.   
  • Cinnamon is an ancient spice. It was imported to Egypt in about 2000 BCE. The ancient Egyptians used cinnamon together with myrrh to embalm the dead. They considered cinnamon to be more valuable than gold!  

Anatomy & Etymology 

  • Cinnamon is the inner bark of some tree species of the genus Cinnamomum. Cinnamon trees can grow about 60 feet tall.
  • Cinnamon farmers begin to harvest cinnamon when the tree reaches two years old. They cut the tree back so that shoots form from the stump. After one more year, the farmers strip the outer bark from the shoots and set the peels out to dry in the sun.
  • When the bark dries, it curls into "quills," which are the sticks that are cut and sold as cinnamon sticks. They can also be ground into powdered cinnamon, which is how much of the cinnamon we see is sold in stores. So, what do a porcupine and a cinnamon tree have in common? They both grow quills!
  • The word "cinnamon" comes from late Middle English derived from the Old French form, "cinnamome," from the Greek "kinnamon." The Greek was borrowed from a Phoenician word, which was similar to the related Hebrew word "qinnāmōn."

How to Pick, Buy, & Eat

  • Cinnamon is harvested twice a year, immediately after the rainy season. The humidity in the air makes the bark peel more easily.
  • The bark is typically peeled by hand by skilled peelers.
  • The quality of cinnamon is judged by the thickness of the bark, the appearance of the quills (broken or whole), the aroma, and the flavor. 
  • Cinnamon is a spice used to add flavor to a variety of dishes. For example, it may be added to desserts, chocolate, toast (in cinnamon sugar), fruit (especially apples), roasted veggies, soups, tea, and hot cocoa. It's also good in savory dishes like Bavarian pot roast, Moroccan chicken, and Indian curry. 

Nutrition 

  • It is best to eat cinnamon in small doses in its ground form, sprinkling it on top of food or adding a small teaspoon to food. Eating too much cinnamon could cause adverse health effects.
  • Cinnamon has one of the most recognizable scents. Its pungent, spicy smell is due to the chemical called "cinnamaldehyde." This chemical is considered an antioxidant that has some anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
  • Cinnamon is believed to regulate the sugar in our blood and possibly lower cholesterol; however, study findings aren't clear.
  • Cinnamon oil can keep mosquitoes away! It kills mosquito larvae and probably repels adult mosquitoes, too. 

 

History of French Toast!

Photo by DronG/Shutterstock.com
  • The first known reference to a food similar to French toast was found in the Apicius, a first-century Roman cookbook written in Latin. It describes a sweet dish made of large pieces of white bread soaked in milk and beaten eggs, then fried in oil and topped with honey. 
  • Bread has been a staple food for most cultures since food first began being prepared. Up until very recently, the vast majority of humans would have never dreamed of wasting any food.
  • Soaking bread in milk and egg and then cooking it seems logical enough, making a good tasty meal while not wasting any bread. Slices of bread are coated or soaked in an egg and milk mixture. You can also add vanilla, cinnamon, or both. The soaked bread is fried on both sides until browned and cooked. Chefs often recommend day-old bread because the stale bread will soak up more egg mixture without falling apart.
  • French toast toppings may be simple, like butter and powdered sugar, or you can add honey, syrup, jam, or fruit in any combination.
  • Other names for French toast around the globe include pain perdu (France), eggy bread, Gypsy toast, or poor knights of Windsor (Britain); rabanada (Portugal and Brazil); torrija (Spain); and Bombay toast (India).

Let's Learn About Mexico!

Photo by Alena Darmel
  • Officially, Mexico's name is "The United Mexican States." It is one of several countries and territories in North America, including Canada and the United States of America.
  • Spanish is Mexico's national language, and Mexico is the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world. Mexican people didn't always speak Spanish, though. For thousands of years, Native Americans lived there and built great cities. The people had advanced language, education, and calendar systems, and they had very clever ways of raising food. Mexico is also the country with the largest number of native American speakers in North America. 
  • The capital of Mexico is Mexico City. Mexican legend says that Aztec leaders were told to build their great city of Tenochtitlan at the site where they saw an eagle sitting on a nopal cactus with a snake in its beak. That image is in the center of Mexico's flag. The Aztecs built their city on an island in the middle of a lake. The ruins of Tenochtitlan are at the center of Mexico City and still sit on top of a lake! As water is pumped out to serve the needs of the city's growing population, the city has been sinking at a rate of 6 to 8 inches per year.  
  • Indigenous Mexican people included the Aztecs in the central interior of the country, the Mayans of the Yucatan peninsula, and the Zapotec of the south. Spanish explorers landed in Mexico in the early 1500s, and they ruled Mexico for over 300 years. During this time of colonization, Mexico's Mesoamerican civilizations mixed with European culture.
  • Before the arrival of Spaniards, native Mexican food primarily consisted of corn, beans, peppers, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, and herbs. Indigenous people occasionally hunted and added wild turkey, rabbit, deer, and quail to their largely vegetarian diets. Native royalty sipped chocolate drinks. Europeans introduced cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, chickens, sugarcane, and wheat to Mexico upon their arrival. 
  • Mexican cuisine uses chili peppers to give it its distinct flavor. Jalapeños, poblanos, and serrano peppers are commonly used in Mexican dishes. Dishes that include mole, a sauce made of dark chocolate, chili peppers, cinnamon, and other spices, may be served on special occasions, such as Día de los Muertos. 

What is it like to be a kid in Mexico?

  • Mexican children may live near the ocean or the gulf, in the desert, or in the mountains. 
  • Kids often live with extended family, including grandparents. Their full names include their father's and their mother's.
  • Most kids speak Spanish, but Mexico also recognizes 68 native languages. 
  • They attend school from September through June. Large schools have two shifts—one group in the morning and one in the afternoon. Students are usually required to wear uniforms. 
  • They may play soccer, baseball, and other sports. Jumping rope and other outdoor games are very popular. They might play a game similar to bingo called Lotería. It is played with picture cards and songs. 
  • Corn tortillas are a staple for kids, along with beans and rice. Dishes that include mole, a sauce often made of dark chocolate, chili peppers, cinnamon, and other spices, may be served on special occasions. 
  • A popular family holiday is Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), a celebration to remember and honor a family's ancestors. Family members decorate the graves of their relatives who have passed on. Typical foods served for this holiday include empanadas, tamales, pan de muertos (a sweet bread in which a ring with a tiny plastic skeleton is hidden), and calaveras de azucar (sugar candy skulls). 

Lettuce Joke Around

What does a sad tortilla say? 

"I don’t want to taco bout it."

Lettuce Joke Around

What did the tortilla say to the avocado when the dip bowl was empty? 

“We’ve hit guac bottom!”

THYME for a Laugh

I named my dog Cinnamon!

He's a lot of bark!

The Yolk's On You

Hot sauce asks a jar of salsa: "You’re really not that extreme are you?"

Salsa replies, “No. I was born to be Mild.”

THYME for a Laugh

What did the kiwi skin say to the kiwi? 

"I've got you covered."

The Yolk's On You

What is a scarecrow’s favorite fruit? 

Straw-berries!

That's Berry Funny

Why were the little strawberries upset? 

Because their parents were in a jam!

That's Berry Funny

Why did the kiwi go out with the prune? 

Because he couldn't find a date!

THYME for a Laugh

Have you heard the joke about the tortilla? 

It was corny.

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