Take a break for breakfast!

The truth? I love breakfast. I’ll eat breakfast food any time of day. I love scrambled eggs, breakfast burritos, omelets, hashbrowns, muffins, pancakes, French toast, and bagels. A nice cup of coffee, a little juice, and I’m set. I seriously could eat breakfast food every meal of the day. I’m guessing I’d probably get tired of that after awhile, but it would take a significant amount of time.

One of my favorite breakfast dishes is the breakfast casserole. So a few days ago, I decided to liven up my breakfast by making a strata. It’s apparently an Italian layered casserole featuring bread and eggs. The recipe I’m presenting here is adapted from a recipe for Cheesy Sausage Strata in the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book. But it called for sausage (which I didn’t have), so my recipe is sans any sort of breakfast meat. Let’s see how my Saturday Morning Strata went down:

1. Cube day old French or Italian bread—or use some bread you made in the bread machine a week ago and need to get rid of. You’ll need about 4 cups of cubed bread. Sprinkle it in the bottom of a small baking pan that you have sprayed liberally with Pam.
IMG_1907

2. Chop 1/2 of a large onion and mince one clove of garlic. Saute these together in a skillet with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil. When cooked through, sprinkle the onions and garlic mixture over the bread cubes in the baking pan.
IMG_1908IMG_1909

3. Wash a few mushrooms and slice enough to fill one cup. Saute these over medium heat in the skillet with a few more tablespoons of oil. Cook until golden, then sprinkle over the onion/garlic layer.
IMG_1910IMG_1912

4. I had some grape tomatoes that were about to become tomato raisins, so I decided to throw those in, too. Plus, they’d give the strata a nice burst of color. I halved enough of them to make about 1/2 cup and sprinkled them on top of the other layers in the baking pan. Pretty!
IMG_1913

5. You’re going to need about 1 cup of grated/shredded cheese for this recipe. I used Colby Jack because I like it and I had a block of it. You could use Monterey Jack or cheddar or whatever floats your boat. At this point, sprinkle about 1/2 cup of the cheese over the layers in your baking pan.
IMG_1914

6. In a medium bowl, whisk together 4 eggs, 1 cup milk, and 1 cup heavy cream. In all honesty, you could use 2 cups of milk. I just had some cream and wanted to see what it would do to the eggs. (It made them very fluffy and creamy. It was a delight!) You’re also going to want to add salt and pepper to taste and any herbs you want to feature in your strata. I just used some parsley I had on hand, dried parsley at that. Adding the seasoning with the eggs ensures that it goes throughout the entire casserole. Because I didn’t do this and my strata could use a tad bit more salt.

7. Pour the egg mixture over the layers in the baking dish, then use the back of a wooden spoon to gently press down the layers, making sure that the bread and everything is bathed in the egg mixture. Top with the remainder of the cheese.
IMG_1915

8. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30-35 minutes. The casserole should be fairly firm and the cheese fully melted and slightly browned. Then, pour some coffee, get a little glass of juice, and sit down to a yummy breakfast.
IMG_1916IMG_1917

Ingredients:
4 cups bread, cubed
1/2 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup cheese of your choice
4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Herbs to taste
Olive oil for cooking (about 4 tbsp)

Enjoy!

Advertisements

One thought on “Take a break for breakfast!”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s