William Drabble's Pain perdu with strawberries recipe dazzles with its sweet, salty and sour flavour combinations, in the form of caramelised strawberries, Parmesan shavings and aged balsamic vinegar. Pain perdu translates as 'lost bread', so use up leftover stale bread for this beautiful dessert.

Begin with the pain perdu; add the eggs and sugar to a bowl, mix to combine. Add in the milk and cream. Put the stale brioche slices into the mix for a few minutes to allow them to soak up the liquid.

To make the strawberry syrup mix; add the 100g of sugar a drop of water to a pan. Cook until it reaches a light caramel colour. Add the 30g of butter and the strawberries. Bring it to a boil before removing from the heat. Add a sprinkle of black pepper. Keep the pan warm until you are ready to serve.

Going back to the pain perdu; add the 100g of butter to a large frying pan, allow to slowly melt. As it begins to go golden brown add in the soaked brioche, reduce the heat slightly to prevent the butter from burning, but keep it hot enough to colour the bread.

Allow the brioche to cook on both sides for a few minutes, so it is golden brown all over. Remove from the pan and place on a baking tray. Sprinkle with some grated parmesan. Carefully gratinate under the grill.

To serve; place the pain perdu onto plates, spoon over some of the warm strawberries. Top with the parmesan shavings and drizzle over some good quality balsamic vinegar.

For the sauce

  • 400g strawberries
  • 100g of sugar
  • 30g of butter
  • Black pepper
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • 12 parmesan shavings, shaved with vegtable peeler

For the pain perdu

  • 4 eggs
  • 75g of sugar
  • 750ml of milk
  • 250ml of double cream
  • 4 slices of brioche load, stale, approzimately 2cm thick
  • 100g of butter
  • 30g of parmesan, grated