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Big Photo equals Big Breakfast {Love}

Can’t you just taste the low-calorie cheesy goodness?

Here are two things I’m loving right now:

1.  Breakfast casseroles and the fact that they have an entire section in Chef Art Smith’s book, Back to the Family:  Food Tastes Better Shared with Ones You Love

2. The impending arrival of spring (I hope soon)

Well, there are actually more than two things, but you probably don’t want to read through that list or maybe I’ll post more later.  For those who don’t know him, Chef Art Smith was Oprah’s personal chef for many years and he was a 2002 James Beard Award winner (he won in 2007 as well) for his cookbook,  Back to the Table:  The Reunion of Food and Family.  You can find his coookbook here.   He owns two restaurants and I think is best known for Table fifty-two in Chicago.

I’m sure there is tons to read about Chef Art on the web, but do take a peek at his book.  There are some neat recipes, beautiful photos and lots of recipes with a nod at his southern family roots.

Getting back to the subject of those dreamy, cheesy, carb-filled casseroles…I made this one for a PD (translation: playdate) at my house last week.  All of my wonderful MOPS friends and their sweet kiddos came over and this breakfast casserole was on the menu.  Did I mention that these casseroles are prepared the night before and refrigerated until the next morning?  They get put into the oven and baked and then you can walk out the door (like to a MOPS meeting for example) or serve them to your guests.  Perfect for houseguests.  They will all love you.

Important to note:

You cannot mess this up.

{There, I said it.}

Italian Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients

1 12-ounce package of bulk sweet Italian sausage

10 green onions, sliced (white and green parts)

2 zucchini, chopped (you could subsitute yellow squash here)

1 tsp Kosher salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup roasted red bell peppers, drained and chopped

1 Italian (or French bread) loaf, cut into cubes

2 cups shredded Italian-blend cheese (or cheddar)

6 large eggs

1 1/2 cups milk

Method

Lightly grease a 13 x 9-inch baking dish.  Set aside.

In large skillet over medium heat, cook sausage until no longer pink.  Stir frequently to get even browning and to break apart.  Drain.

Add green onions, zucchini (or squash) salt and pepper.  Saute 3 to 4 minutes or until veggies are tender.  Stir in  roasted bell peppers.  Drain and cool for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk together eggs and milk.

Spread bread cubes in prepared baking dish.  Top with vegetables and sausage.  Add shredded cheese and top with egg-milk mixture.  Cover and chill 8 hours or overnight.

Bake covered at 325 for 50 minutes.  Remove from oven and remove aluminum foil.  Bake an additional 10 minutes until cheese is bubbly and lightly golden brown.

 

 

 

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