The specialty of Snowflake Tea House (2180 Pleasant Hill Road, Duluth) is its soaring desserts, piled high with scoops of ice cream, fruit, marshmallows, sprinkles, cookies, and the like—that’s the colorful part. But the foundation of these eye-popping creations—known as honey toast, or brick toast—is the humble loaf of bread. Honey toast originated in the Shibuya neighborhood of Tokyo before spreading to teahouses in Asia and beyond, built on loaves of sandwich bread that are hollowed out—or cut into batons and stacked, Jenga-style, into great towers—before being topped with all those goodies. Trying it for yourself? Bring a crowd.
Honey toast is one of the most dramatic makeovers you can give to a sandwich loaf, but certainly not the only one; stuffing comes to mind. But see also these preparations available at Atlanta-area restaurants, representing culinary traditions from around the world in which a little bit of bread gets transformed—by heat, by time, by a little special attention from the cook—into another masterpiece entirely.
Slightly acidic from diced tomatoes, and made with pieces of the springy teff-based flatbread injera, this cold dish tastes a little like an Ethiopian relative of panzanella—with a little jalapeño kick. At Desta Ethiopian Kitchen in North Druid Hills, it makes a fine breakfast alongside scrambled eggs or a hearty bowl of stewed, spiced beans.
You can get great cornbread dressing year-round at soul food joints like Big Daddy’s Kitchen in Southwest Atlanta, where it’s served along Southern-style staples. Baked chicken, fried whiting, smothered beef liver—the list goes on. For dessert, obviously: cobbler, pound cake, or banana pudding.
A popular South Indian street food, kothu parotta involves torn-up pieces of flaky flatbread cooked in a richly spiced tomato sauce. It’s pure comfort food, served at Nalan Indian Cuisine in Alpharetta with your choice of egg, chicken, or mutton—or all three of the above—or, pictured here, vegetables.
This salad is one of a number of clever preparations from the Eastern Mediterranean—Lebanon, Syria, Palestine—that make use of day-old flatbread, and frankly, one of the best things you could do with it: toast or fry it till crunchy, then toss it in lemon and olive oil with a bunch of crisp green veggies and tomatoes, like they do at Mediterranean Bakery in Embry Hills.
Vanilla-rum French toast sandwich
Locals breathed a sigh of relief when Kirkwood institution Le Petit Marché—formerly owned by Marchet Sparks, who decided to step away from the business last year—reopened under new management. The updated menu from chef Anthony Sanders keeps some old faves like this hearty breakfast/brunch sandwich, stuffed with scrambled eggs and your choice of chicken sausage, Nueske’s bacon, or (pictured here) veggie sausage.
This article appears in our December 2022 issue.