As the temperatures cool and the holidays approach, I dream about having a simple, savory, throw-it-in-the-oven, baked breakfast casserole. I had some specific criteria in mind:
- fast prep
- didn't have to make it the night before (but you could if you want to)
- short ingredient list, made up of mostly pantry staples
- simply seasoned so everyone would enjoy and it could work with a variety of sides (it would be great with fresh fruit on the side)
- yielded enough for one meal for five to six people, or a few meals for fewer people
This casserole delivers that, and it reheats beautifully. If you like, you can prepare the entire filling the night before, cover, and refrigerate overnight. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before baking, and bake per instructions.
Simple sausage & egg breakfast casserole
serves 5 as a stand-alone, or more if served with sides
5-6 slices of bread (we use gluten-free, but of course you could use regular bread), cut into 1/2" cubes
1/2 cup shredded cheese (sharp cheddar, or cheese blends work well)
1 tsp allspice, divided into 2 x 1/2 tsp parts
1 tsp dry mustard, divided into 2 x 1/2 tsp parts
2 tsp dried sage, divided into 2 x 1 tsp parts
1 tsp salt, divided into 2 x 1/2 tsp parts
several grinds of ground pepper, to taste
2 1/2 cups milk
1 lb ground pork (if unseasoned, add 1/2 of total spice amounts above to meat as it cooks)
Preheat the oven to 350. Lightly grease a 7 x 11" pan with butter or avocado oil.
In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and milk until smooth. Add remaining amounts of all spices. Add bread cubes and allow to soak while meat cooks.
Brown the meat in a skillet. If it is unseasoned, season with half the salt, pepper, sage, dry mustard, and allspice as it browns. When cooked, remove from pan and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
Add meat and shredded cheese to egg mixture and stir to combine. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake uncovered for 45-55 minutes, or until the casserole doesn't wobble or look too wet in any area.
Oh, and happy Thanksgiving, friends!