Monday, October 25, 2010
I'm not sure if you've noticed, and I'm sorry if you're not ready to think about this, but it's coming. Christmas is coming, that is. It's two months from today, friends. Sure, Halloween has yet to pass, and we've not even reached the month blessed with Thanksgiving. But jack-o-lanterns and pilgrim hats are now 75% off. Sparkles and snowflakes have taken their place on store shelves. And you know what the onset of The Holiday Season means, don't you?
If at all possible I recommend you welcome your guests into your home for brunch. Brunch means you don't have to get up at the crack of dawn to prepare the meal. Brunch means that after you've entertained those special people you'll have time to clear the kitchen and put your feet up that evening. And brunch also means that as the chef you're allowed to straddle the breakfast/lunch line and serve anything you want. This casserole, along with a sweet bread, bowl of fruit, and a big, green salad would be perfect. This casserole is also just salty enough, creamy and filling; it's excellent as a leftover; and it's made with ingredients even your youngest guests should enjoy.
So don't fear The Holiday Season. Embrace it! Such dishes as this one make that an easy task.
Ham and Cheese Breakfast Bake
Adapted from Allrecipes
Makes 6 to 8 servings
This casserole is easily customizable to suit your tastes. You can replace the ham with bacon or sausage, and the cream with milk. You can make your own hashbrowns, and you can change the type of cheese called for in the recipe. If you want to up the nutritional ante you could add chopped spinach, chard or broccoli. And you can also season it with more salt, added pepper or more hot sauce. Any way you make it your family - or guests - are sure to enjoy it!
2 12-ounce bags frozen, shredded hashbrowns, thawed overnight in fridge
1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 boneless ham steak, diced
1.5 to 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
4 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream
A few dashes of hot sauce
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Squeeze moisture out of thawed potatoes then put them in a large bowl. Pour melted butter over potatoes and stir until well-combined. Line ungreased casserole dish with buttered potatoes, and press to make a crust. Bake 10 minutes or until potatoes are just crisped and brown on the edges. Remove dish from oven and set aside.
3. In a medium bowl whisk eggs, cream and hot sauce.
4. Sprinkle ham over potato crust. Then add cheese. Pour cream and egg mixture over ingredients.
5. Bake 30 minutes or until set and gold and bubbling at edges.
Note: If you halve this recipe I do not recommend reducing the amount of butter used in the potato crust or using less than one cup of your desired cheese.
Find more great ideas at:
Sumo's Sweet Stuff
Skip to my Lou
Keeping It Simple
Mad In Crafts
Under the Table and Dreaming
The DIY Showoff
It's So Very Cheri