Baking with Olivia and Caroline


By Published On: December 1st, 2023

‘Tis the season for giving, so Caroline and I are giving you a breakfast recipe that will surely make everyone happy this month … as long as they like almonds. And French toast. 

I first had something like this while at one of my favorite breakfast joints on Martha’s Vineyard. I knew that I wanted to share it with Caroline and the fam when I got home. Caroline is as much of a breakfast fan as I am. This version isn’t an exact replica of the one I fell in love with, but it’s pretty darn close! 

We strongly suggest you use brioche, but if you can’t find it, challah will do. And as an FYI, we only spread the almond paste on one side of the bread. If it were on both sides, it would likely be too sweet; which is a lot coming from two people who both have a sweet tooth.


8 1” thick slices brioche (day old works best)
1 cup sliced almonds
Maple syrup
Fresh fruit (optional)
Confectioner sugar 


3 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
¼ tsp almond extract
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp cinnamon
Pinch of nutmeg
Pinch of salt

Almond paste spread

1 7oz pkg almond paste
1 large egg
2 tbs butter


Place sliced almonds on a plate or shallow dish and set aside.  

Mix all the custard ingredients into another shallow dish until thoroughly combined (we normally use a square 8×8 baking dish.) Set aside.

Combine almond paste, egg, and butter in a mixer or food processor and mix until you have a spreadable paste.

Preheat a non-stick or cast iron skillet over medium heat.

Spread one side of the bread with the almond paste and then dip both sides into the French toast mixture, letting the excess drip off. Press each side of the bread into the sliced almonds so both sides are evenly covered with almonds. 

Generously butter your pan, and cook each side of the toast for three to four minutes or until golden brown. The almonds should be nice and toasted but not burnt. Adjust the heat if necessary. 

Dust with confectioners sugar, add some fresh fruit, and serve with warm, pure maple syrup!

Happy Holidays! •

Olivia and Caroline are enthusiastic foodies and bakers who are constantly in the kitchen, as well as explorers who create their own adventures in our area – and did we mention they are mother and daughter? Follow Olivia on Instagram to see her many creations at @oliviawvalentine.