French Toast with cage free eggs

Sainsbury’s are one of the only retailers who use cage-free eggs in their own brand products. I will only ever buy free range eggs (or I get them from my mum as she keeps hens) and I think that only products using free range eggs can be approved by the Vegetarian Society. I would not call myself a militant vegetarian, but free range eggs are something I feel really strongly about. My mum sometimes gets chicks from a farm, sometimes she gets live eggs to hatch if one hen gets broody, and a few times she has had rescue hens, which generally are chickens that were in battery farms but have stopped producing eggs so regularly. Seeing what they look like when she first gets them is horrible- they have hardly any feathers, bald  patches, they are so scrawny. But the worst part is that they don’t display normal chicken behaviour. The bottom of my parents’ garden is fenced off for the hens (with fencing over the top of some little apple trees to try and keep out the foxes) and the hens can scratch in the ground to their heart’s content. But the rescue hens don’t know how to do this- I imagine they have never seen grass or mud before. Thankfully after a few weeks of being with the other hens they pick up the behaviour, and their feathers grow back. They don’t tend to lay eggs every day, but they still lay lots each week. So often is I visit I will be given eggs to take home, but if I buy them instead, I will only ever buy free range eggs. Anyway, Sainsbury’s have asked bloggers to post a recipe using their eggs, and I was happy to oblige.

2014-09-13 14.48.21As you may know, I have been developing a love for French Toast. I have often found it too eggy, but on holiday this summer I had it a few times and it was gorgeous, so it has become one of my weekend breakfasts. All it needs is bread (I used sliced brioche), an egg, and some milk. Simple.

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This is not really a recipe, more of a “how to”. The apple tree in our garden produced a bumper crop this year, so I decided to have some spiced apple alongside. I cracked one egg into a pasta bowl, and added a splash of almond milk and some almond extract. I whisked it up, and then lay the bread in there to soak while I cooked the apple (in a tsp coconut oil and a little cinnamon).

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Once the apple was soft I put that on the plate and cooked the toast in the pan (love a one pan meal)- over a low- medium heat one slice at a time for a few minutes each side until golden.

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With a little maple butter on one (I am trying to make it last as long as possible) and maple syrup on the other, it was such a delicious breakfast.

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Sainsbury’s have a little video about their cage free eggs which you can watch here.

Are you a free range egg fan? What is the most unusual pet you have had? We had a stick insect when we were little, imaginatively called Sticky.

*I was sent vouchers from Sainsbury’s to pay for ingredients for this post. All opinions are my own.

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6 thoughts on “French Toast with cage free eggs”

  1. This looks scrummy. I also feel really strongly about free range eggs, if there aren’t any I just won’t buy eggs at all. Seeing the rescued battery hens is so heartbreaking and the difference in price is never that much to justify not buying free range.
    I think hens are something we’d like to have in the future (when we have a garden!) as there’s nothing tastier than a home hatched egg.

  2. I always make sure to buy free range eggs and, like Claire, if there aren’t any free range eggs available, I’ll go without.
    The strangest pet we had growing up was a duckling that had been abandoned in the nest. My Dad brought him indoors from their pond and we hatched him on top of the radiator in the bathroom. His name was PeePee! I think I was about seven at the time and my brother and I used to make him run through mazes and bring out bowls of water for him to swim in until he was big enough to be returned to the pond outside.

    1. How cute!
      We had a pet squirrel at school as my teacher had rescued it after it had fallen from the nest- he was called Nutty!

  3. I think it’s so horrible how chickens are treated. I watched that American document about how chickens were kept so packed in a darkened shed. It was awful. So now I only ever buy free range or organic chicken and always free range eggs. How lovely though that your mum takes in rescue chickens and that they do recover.
    The French toast with the apple sounds really lovely. Love the sound of coconut fried apples with the cinnamon. Yum!

    1. Apples and cinnamon are perfect for this time of year 🙂
      Yes it is good to see the chickens get better once they have had a bit of tlc.

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