Bring milk to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/2 cup sugar and brandy.
Place bread slices in a single layer in a 15- x 10- x 1-inch jellyroll pan. Pour milk mixture over bread, and let stand 10 minutes. Drain off excess milk.
Beat egg yolks until thick and lemon colored. Add 2 tablespoons sugar and lemon rind, beating well. Beat egg whites (at room temperature) until soft peaks form. Gradually add 2 tablespoons sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold into egg yolk mixture. Spread egg mixture evenly over bread; let stand 30 minutes.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon lard in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Lift bread slices, one at a time, with a spatula, and place in hot butter mixture. Cook 2 to 3 at a time until golden brown, turning once. Remove to a platter, and keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining bread slices, adding butter and lard as needed.
Combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle over bread slices. Serve warm.