October 13, 2008

Breakfast Casserole


The most wonderful thing about this casserole is that you can pretty much do anything to it that you'd like as long as you stick to the basic amounts called for. If you would prefer sausage instead of ham... go for it. The same goes with the vegetables and cheese. I've made this in countless varieties and they've always been really good. Use your imagination and your families favorites to make this recipe your own.

Another great thing about it is that you can assemble it a day ahead and have it ready to pop in the oven the next morning. This is my "go to" breakfast on Holidays like Christmas and New Years because I can get it ready ahead, throw it in the over and be done. Instead of cooking, I can be enjoying that time with my family but still be providing them with a delicious and hearty breakfast. Great stuff!

Ingredients
* 2 cups Ham diced
* 4 1/2 cups cubed sourdough bread
* 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
* 1 brick of light cream cheese
* 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
* 1 pound mushrooms, sliced
* 1 bunch baby spinach. chopped
* 12 eggs
* 2-3 cups whole milk (try 2 cups, if your mix doesn't seem wet enough add more.)
* 1 tsp dry mustard
* 1 tsp salt
* Fresh ground pepper to taste
* 2-3 Tablespoons butter or olive oil for sautéing and to butter the baking pan.

Method
1. I like to sauté the diced ham to give it some color and also to render out any extra fat. Browned ham just tastes better. Set aside.

2. Gently sauté the mushrooms and onions until tender, set aside.

3. Sauté the spinach until just wilted, set aside.

4. Butter a 9x13 inch baking pan. Combine the eggs, milk, dry mustard, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well. In another larger bowl combine the bread cubes, ham, mushrooms, onions and half of the cheddar cheese. Add the egg mixture to the bread mixture and turn gently to combine. Spoon this mixture into the buttered baking pan.

5. Cut the cream cheese into small pieces and evenly distribute over the top of the casserole. Cover with the remaining cheddar cheese.

6. At this point you can cover and refrigerate overnight, to bake the next day. Whether you make this immediately or refrigerate over night, allow it to set for 30 minutes at room temperature before baking. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake uncovered for about 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes, until the eggs are completely set.

Serves 8-10

20 comments:

  1. What a wonderful and versatile recipe! Looks amazing!

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  2. I don't know if I have enough of the needed pans to "set aside." Let me call my mom. (But it does look ever so good.)

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  3. altadenahiker... LOL! come on over and I'll borrow you a few... or I could just make it for you! :P

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  4. Funny you should post this. I just "taste drove" a recipe for an Italian casserole that I'm making for a larger group next Sunday. Unlike yours, mine was dry in spots. After the taste drive, I decided to use less bread, more egg and more Italian sausage. Now I have your recipe as a guide to my modifications.

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  5. PS I see another big difference is that you combine the egg/bread mixture in a bowl first. Mine was six layers, then pour the egg mixture over the whole thing.

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  6. Wow this looks amazing!! May be great for a family brunch I have coming up next weekend.

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  7. That looks great! Sort of like a fritata or strata, right? Great way to use up leftovers as well.

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  8. this looks really delicious. reminds me of a fritata.

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  9. Their are lots of goodies in there. I bet no two bites are the same! It looks so comforting and delicious!

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  10. yum!I love casserole.Your casserole looks very delicious.wow didn't know making a casserole need 12 eggs.Can I use 6 eggs instead 12?:)

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  11. Susan C... When I started making this casserole, it also was layered, but I found that mixing it all together made for a moister and more even casserole. Thanks for the comment :)

    Zesty Cook... Thanks! :)

    Olga... Yes, great way to use up leftovers, indeed :) Thanks!

    jo... It is much like a strata or fritata likle Olga said above. Thank you :)

    Reeni... Thanks sweetie :) Indeed, ever bites a little different :)

    Sweetiepie... This is a BIG casserole.. it will feed 10-12 easily. I wouldn't suggest cutting back on the eggs, I'm afraid it wouldn't hold together well if you did. However, you could half the recipe for few portions, if you needed. Thanks :)

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  12. This is definitely not your Mama's casserole! This looks so inviting!

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  13. this picture makes me really hungry. lately my breakfasts are just smoothies. it would be nice to make something hearty and filling like this.

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  14. Nazarina A... thank you! I love your blog! Wonderful! Thanks for stopping by :)

    Joanna... thank you :) Nice to meet you!

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  15. This I can relate to ....yum is almost like a deep filled tortilla (spanish) hehe. I just love wholesome food like this.
    Thanks for adding me as a friend in Foodbuzz.
    Take care and please visit my blog ..I think we have similar tastes. :)

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  16. Rico... thanks for coming by :) I will definitely check your blog out!

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  17. Just tried out your recipe...it was fantastic and really easy to make. I'll be using it for a fundraiser breakfast later this week to feed about 30 people.

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  18. Dorothy... thank you so much for coming back and letting me know how you liked it! That really makes me smile! Best of luck on your fund raiser this weekend!

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  19. This looks yummy!!! Im going to try this.

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