The state of emergency in Japan has caused a sudden spike in home-cooking fever. With many residents working from home and a lot of restaurants staying closed, home cooking is a simple pleasure that the whole family can enjoy.

Hotel New Otani Osaka, the famous Japanese luxury hotel, keen to support the nation’s new pass time, has released its “Secret Hotel Recipes” online. The recipes are available here for a limited time until May 31st. Each recipe is stylishly presented and easy to follow thanks to each step being accompanied by clear pictures. They’re worth checking out if you (or your family) are hungry to add a dash of pizzazz to your table.

Amongst Hotel New Otani’s famous lineup of delicious signature dishes, their French Toast, Pain Perdu、パン・ペルデュ in Japanese, is especially renowned as being a heavenly medley of crispness and fluffiness. Easy to make and exquisite to eat, we donned our aprons and gave the recipe a try so that you too can learn how to make Hotel New Otani’s French Toast!

Hotel New Otani’s French Toast Recipe

Pain Perdu, the French term for French toast, means “lost bread” and is typically made from bread such as toast or baguettes.

French toast is commonly made and eaten for breakfast or as a snack in Japan. It’s simple to make but following the secret recipe from Hotel New Otani’s chefs will no doubt have a very special result!

Photo by Toby M

Ingredients (for one person)

  • One piece of bread, no crusts
  • Sugar 15g
  • Fresh cream 50 mls
  • Milk 50mls
  • One egg
  • Vanilla - a splash
  • Butter 15g
  • Sugar 15g

If you can’t get vanilla, then vanilla essence will do just fine. For bread, I used cheap convenience store bread, or 食パン shokupan, in Japanese.

Step 1

Photo by Toby M

First add the sugar and milk into a bowl and mix well. Then add the cream, eggs and vanilla and mix until well combined.

Step 2

Photo by Toby M

Soak your bread in the egg liquid for about 15 minutes, turning the bread over half way to ensure both sides are well coated.

Step 3

Photo by Toby M

Add the sugar to the frying pan and warm it gently before adding the egg mix soaked bread. Then add the butter to the pan and bake on a medium heat until it is browned. Take care not to have the heat too high here or the bread may burn*.

Photo by Toby M

Photo by Toby M

*Note: The sugar will caramelize and can quickly blacken. I fried a couple of slices and the sugar turned quite dark on one of them but it still tasted incredible. So, don’t be disheartened if you leave a slice in the pan for too long!


Photo by Toby M

When the bread is browned on one side, add more sugar to the pan, flip the bread over and then cover the pan with a lid. Bake slowly until the other side if browned.

Photo by Toby M

I didn’t have a see-through pan lid so I only covered the pan and lifted the lid to check every 40 seconds or so.


Photo by Toby M

By now a beautiful aroma of sweet bread should be wafting around your kitchen.

Remove the pan lid and check to see if the other side if brown. When it’s brown, remove the pan from the heat and it’s done!

Plate up and enjoy the crips and fluffy fruits of your labors.

Photo by Toby M

When we cut into our toast, the outside had a good crunch and the inside was a veritable cloud of soft, rich sweet bread. We felt like we were actually eating breakfast at a hotel.

Photo by Toby M

We topped out pain perdu with crispy bacon, blueberries, and lashings of maple syrup. How will you eat yours?

By - Toby M.