Rise 'n Shine

Every once in a while, I find myself playing the role of hostess for a weekend. I'll have 3 or 4 guests over for a weekend and need a simple breakfast that will wow them.

That's when I make my Overnight Breakfast Strata.

Made with flavorful ingredients, this warm breakfast combines the wonderful tastes of fresh omeletes with the simplicity of oven-baked french toast.

I've included my favorite ingredients in this recipe. If you see something that you don't like, omit it. In the same fashion, feel free to add one of your favorites that you don't see listed. It's a simple dish that is easy to alter to your tastes...so do it!

I find that this dish is especially helpful when I am entertaining a group. It takes very little time to mix together in the evening (you can complete the task in the time it takes to clear the table after dinner). Then, you let the magic happen while you and your guests are resting. In the morning, you just pop it into the oven and serve it when it's done. Ta-da! You've become an instant success!

Overnight Breakfast Strata

  • 6 slices of bread
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 c. skim milk
  • 1/2 c. nonfat cream cheese
  • 2 tsp. mustard
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1/2 c. chopped onion
  • 1/2 c. chopped pepper
  • 1/2 c. sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 c. cubed ham
  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • 1/2 c. low fat shredded cheddar cheese

Spray the bottom of a 9x13-inch glass baking pan with nonstick spray. Carefully line the bottom of the pan with the 6 slices of bread. (If you need to, you can cut the slices so they fit.)

In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, cream cheese, mustard, and garlic. Add the next four ingredients (onion through ham) and mix until well coated. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the bread, making sure that the vegetables and ham are evenly distributed. Lay the tomato slices evenly over the top and sprinkle the cheddar cheese over the tomato. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake, covered, for 45 minutes or until the bread appears golden brown. Serve with fresh orange juice.

  • Serves: 6
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour (plus 1 evening storage)

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