Overnight Christmas Strata

kale, herb + gruyere strata

It’s about time I added this recipe to the blog, after it appeared on our table many a Christmas morning and days after while we had family at the house for the holidays. Let me tell you what’s great about this breakfast/brunch dish:

  1. you prepare it the night before so all it takes is a pop in the oven in the morning,
  2. the herbal aroma warms your whole house as it bakes,
  3. the combination of eggs, good bread, cheese and herbs is comfort food at its best for cozy winter mornings,
  4. its appetizing looks make you quite the impressive cook when you have guests around,
  5. everyone loves it (even my non-dairy-eating sister can’t resist).

Unfortunately I didn’t get to share this before prime holiday time and all those family gatherings, but perhaps you can try it as your hangover cure on New Years Day, or for your next lazy Sunday morning brunch. The recipe is not strict about add-ins or spices, so feel free to change it up with different kinds of bread, cheese, no cheese, or different combinations of greens and herbs. This is my favorite version, and I’m not a big cheese eater so I would also love it without.

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Overnight Kale, Herb + Gruyere Strata, adapted from Good Housekeeping

  • 6 large eggs (can substitute liquid egg whites for 3 of the eggs)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 T dijon mustard
  • salt + pepper
  • big handful of spinach or kale
  • a bunch of chopped fresh herbs – basil, rosemary, thyme, sage, parsley
  • 1 loaf French bread OR multigrain loaf OR rosemary loaf
  • 6 oz Gruyere cheese, shredded

Grease shallow 1 1/2-quart ceramic baking dish. In medium bowl, whisk eggs, milk, dijon, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper until well blended. Stir in chopped herbs.

Arrange a layer of bread in the bottom on the dish, overlapping slices to fit. Pour half of egg mixture over bread and layer with spinach/kale. Sprinkle with 2/3 cheese. Cover with remaining bread, tuck more spinach in between and pour remaining egg over all. Gently press down to help bread absorb egg mixture. Sprinkle with remaining cheese, cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until puffed and golden and tip of knife inserted in center comes out clean, covering top during last 15 minutes if browning too quickly. Let stand 10 minutes to set custard before serving. Serves 8

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mom and her strata

DSC_3320Enjoy, & Happy New Year to you all!!!!  -m

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