Brasilian Christmas Breakfast Recipe – Rabanadas

Originally from Portugal, rabanadas are a kind of Brasilian French toast that often appear on breakfast tables at Christmas. The bread is soaked in condensed milk, then fried until crispy, with a custard-like, melt-in-the-mouth texture on the inside. The sweet wine that was originally used is now more often replaced with milk. It’s a rich breakfast treat that’s good enough to eat all year round  (you can find it on our brunch menus at Cabana Islington & Brixton).


1 sourdough baguette

3 eggs

100ml whole milk

175g condensed milk

½ tsp vanilla extract

½ tsp sea salt

Butter, for frying

1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

1 tbsp icing sugar

Fresh berries, to serve (optional)

Greek Yogurt to serve (optional)


Slice the baguette diagonally into 2-2.5cm thick slices and arrange them in a single layer in a wide shallow baking dish. Beat the eggs lightly in a bowl, then whisk in the milk, condensed milk, vanilla extract, and salt. Pour the mixture over the bread, then turn the slices over and press down to ensure they are well coated. Cover with cling film and chill for 20-30 minutes.

Just before eating, melt the butter in a large non-stick pan over a medium heat. Use a fork to lift each bread slice to allow the access liquid to drip away, then lower it into the pan. Fry them in batches for about 2 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Remove to a tray and keep warm.

Meanwhile, mix the cocoa powder, cinnamon and icing sugar together. Dust it over just before serving. Serve warm, with fresh berries and Greek yoghurt or doce de leite, if you like.