A lot of people I know would agree with me: breakfast is great at any time of day, or night.
While the title of this recipe was supposed to be “Overnight” Egg Casserole, I’ve made it in the morning and served it for dinner with complete success. I like doing this on a Friday morning, popping it into the oven when I get home from a long work week on Friday night, and then having leftovers for breakfast Saturday morning. It’s quite multi-purpose.
Overnight Egg Casserole
4 cups (loosely packed) day-old challah or other egg-enriched bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1/2 lb pancetta (thickly sliced), diced
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese, from about 4 oz
Grease an 8-inch square baking dish (or another 1 1/2 quart to 2-quart baking dish), and spread the cubed challah in the bottom.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a skillet over medium to low heat. Add the onions, salt and sugar. Sauté until they are lightly caramelized (a medium golden-brown color), about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in another heavy skillet, heat the other tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat, and sauté the pancetta until the fat is almost all rendered and it begins to get crisp, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set on a paper towel to drain.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, dry mustard, nutmeg and thyme. Season with about 1/4 teaspoon of salt and a generous quantity of black pepper.
Spread the pancetta over the bread cubes, then layer the onions on top. Sprinkle grated Gruyere on top next, then pour the egg mixture over the entire thing.
Press down on the top gently so that all of the bread cubes get soaked a bit with the egg mixture. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 635, Calories from Fat: 382, Fat: 43 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (15.3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 282 mg, Sodium: 1609 g, Potassium: 470 mg, Carbohydrates: 28 g, Fiber: 4 g, Sugar: 8 g, Protein: 37 g.
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