Earthy spinach and nutty cheese star in this brunch-worthy strata
Earthy spinach and nutty cheese star in this brunch-worthy strata.
Ideally, this savory make-ahead bread pudding should be rich enough to satisfy without being overindulgent. And, since strata is such a great make-ahead dish, it should also be straightforward to put together. Unfortunately, too many recipes for strata are soggy and laden with excessive custard and filling ingredients.
Looking to create a go-to breakfast or brunch casserole, we first considered the bread. Whole dried bread slices had the best texture and appearance, and buttering them added richness. Spinach, shallot, and Gruyere complemented each other perfectly for the filling, and we sauteed the vegetables to remove excess moisture and prevent the casserole from becoming waterlogged.
Weighting down the assembled strata overnight improved its texture; we found that two 1 pound boxes of brown or confectioners' sugar, laid side by side over the plastic wrap, made ideal weights.
One hour is minimum, but you could do it overnight to bake the strata the following morning. The recipe can be doubled and assembled in a greased 13-by 9-inch baking dish; increase the baking time to 1 hour and 20 minutes. Substitute any semisoft melting cheese, such as Havarti, sharp cheddar, or Colby for the Gruyere.
• America's Test Kitchen provided this article to The Associated Press.