Torrejas Salvadoreñas en Dulce de Panela / Salvadoran Torrejas
Holy Week is next month, and in El Salvador, this is a holiday steeped in centuries-old traditions. Is celebrated in every corner of the country. It is also a time to prepare and share with family and friends traditional dishes like Torrejas.
This sweet and aromatic dish is not only delectable, but is also a favorite during the Easter season. Torrejas are similar to American-style French toast but there are basic differences that make this dish unique. We always use egg bread, omit the vanilla from the batter, and always fry the Torrejas in oil, not butter. But perhaps the biggest difference is the special syrup which is vital to the dish, as the golden fried bread slices are plated and soaked in the syrup before serving. You will enjoy and savor each bite.
1 1/2 lbs Dulce de Atado (Panela Piloncillo)
4 cups water
Small cinnamon stick
6 large eggs
1 cup milk
⅛ teaspoon salt
6 slices of egg bread (cut off a loaf, each slice 1-inch-thick)
1 cup vegetable oil
In a medium saucepan over a high flame, combine the dulce de panela (piloncillo), water, and cinnamon. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to medium. Cook uncovered, stirring frequently, for about 1 hour. The syrup is ready when the liquid has been reduced by half. Set aside.
When ready to cook the torrejas, break the eggs into a mixing bowl, add the milk and salt, and combine with a whisk or fork. Dip the slices of bread into this batter, taking care not to let any slice soak for too long before frying.
In a large deep skillet over a medium to high flame, heat the oil until very hot. Add the battered slices of bread, two at a time, and leave plenty of room for each slice to fry. Cook on both sides until golden, remove from the skillet, and place on a serving dish or tray. Pour the dulce de panela syrup on top of the torrejas and let them soak for about 24 hours, before serving at room temperature. Feliz Semana Santa!