Thursday, July 09, 2015

Savory Strata (With Anything You Want, Really)

Three-Pig and Cheese Strata = Ham, sausage, BACON, cheese  

Stratas are reserved for special breakfasts around here-- birthday or company-- but they are marvelously adaptable to one's tastes or pantry, so when there are peppers or broccoli or spinach in the garden or the fridge, we throw them in, too!  They're good without meat, as well, but for a birthday breakfast, we always include the savory stuff.

I love stratas not only because they're adaptable and delicious but also because they're supposed to be prepared the night before, which makes for an easy breakfast the next morning, but they also taste delicious cooked right after preparing, which makes a procrastinating Abigail happy.  (For reference, I've included the following picture that I took the morning of Annika's birthday.)


Anything You Want Strata

1 lb. crusty bread, cut in one-inch cubes or thereabouts
1 lb. sausage
1 lb. ham
1/2 lb. bacon
1 large onion, diced and sauteed in a bit of butter until slightly soft
12 eggs
3 1/2 cups milk (I've read of cooks using some cream here, too.  Proceed at your own risk.)
8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese (more if you want a bellyache)
(Other add-ins:
peppers, all the colors!
etc., all sauteed in a bit of butter until slightly soft but not cooked..except the spinach.  Just tear that in pieces and add it without sauteeing)
1 tsp. or thereabouts salt
1 tsp. or thereabouts pepper
 3-5 cloves minced garlic added to the onion pan right at the end and sauteed for only a minute or so (or some shakes of garlic powder, if you wish)
2 tsp. dry mustard powder or a couple tbsp. prepared mustard, or more, to taste

To make a VERY full 13x9 pan, in ten easy-peasy steps.

1. Grease the pan
2. Cook the meat.
3. Dice/crumble the meat.
4. In a big bowl, stir all the stuff, except the liquids, together (meats, veggies, salt, pepper, bread cubes)
5. Layer bread and other stuff in the greased pan.
6. Whisk milk, eggs, and mustard powder/prepared mustard together until smooth and pour over bread and other stuff
7.  Smush down with a spoon until no dry bread remains.
8.  Leave in fridge overnight (or bake immediately)
9.  Bake at 350 degrees for one hour or until inserted knife comes out clean
10.  Gobble, gobble, gobble.

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