Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Ham & Cheese Strata

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I found this recipe in a Women's Day magazine about 2 years ago. I love how easily it comes together and how you can substitute various ingredients based on what you have in your fridge. I make it with different vegetables each time, as you can see! It calls for broccoli and jarred red pepper, but I've used a combination of spinach, mushrooms, bell pepper, cauliflower, eggplant, zucchini, and canned tomatoes as well. I normally pick 2-3 veggies to use in one strata. I try and add a total of 2 cups of vegetables, so whatever you choose, aim for them to add up to 2 cups worth.

It might seem like a breakfast or brunch dish, but once you try it, you'll realize it really is a dinner meal. I serve it with a green salad. My husband doesn't care for quiche, but loves this strata!

This recipe makes one 9x13 or two 8x8 dishes. I opted to make the two 8x8 dishes and put one in the freezer for a meal next month! I just assembled it and baked it about 20 minutes. Let it cool, then wrap in foil and freeze.

Ham and Cheese Strata
6 cups 1-in. cubes plain or whole-wheat Italian bread (about 8 oz)
1 box (10 oz) frozen broccoli florets, thawed and coarsely chopped {I used spinach}
2 cups sliced ham, coarsely chopped
1⁄2 cup chopped jarred roasted red peppers
4 scallions, sliced [I used red onion}
1 cup (4 oz) sharp Cheddar, shredded
6 large eggs
2 cups whole milk
2 Tbsp yellow mustard
1⁄4 tsp pepper

Directions:
1. Heat oven to 375ºF. Coat a shallow 2-qt baking dish with nonstick spray. Spread half the bread cubes over bottom. Cover with half the broccoli, ham, peppers, scallions and cheese. Repeat layer. {Pic below is shown after 1st layer is completed.}


2. Whisk eggs, milk, mustard and pepper in large bowl to blend; pour evenly over strata.

3. Bake, uncovered, 45-50 minutes until puffed and golden and a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Or cover strata with foil and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight, then bake as above.

Enjoy!
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