Cooking for friends via a Food Blog is quite strange. While cooking I think about the friends who requested the recipe. Yet when it’s all cooked and done, they are sadly nowhere near to eat them. It feels like the guests never showed up. Truly, food needs to be shared to make it fully worthwhile.
Breakfast Casserole is the next request that came from S and seconded by D. I have always called these types of casseroles an ‘Egg Bake’.
Before Saira came along, cooking for a Saturday brunch with the folks was almost a ritual – and so was a breakfast casserole. My father in law, Gerry, is an egg and cheese lover (sounds a lot like a lot of toddlers I know, including my own) and that is what he always requested. The different fillings always pleasantly surprised him.
Gerry is famous for confidently making up names of people, places, things, you name it, right on the spot when he forgets but never lets on. They are hilarious substitutions that often leave the family laughing out loud. A sari is a ‘sash-ee’, tiramisu is ‘moose-ae ‘, ciabatta bread is ‘habachi’, Saira’s Patchy Patch doll is ‘Stichy Stich’ and the list goes on. So when he called the breakfast casserole an egg bake, I couldn’t have been more impressed – or maybe a tad bit sad that he couldn’t find a funnier name.
“Some good, that egg bake was” – a compliment that never failed to come from him.
There are a few of my favorite ingredients for this ‘Egg Bake’ – like bacon, pancetta, asparagus and zucchini – that I absolutely love to use but I’ll make one of my favorite combos another time. S and D, who requested this, are not too keen on bacon or pancetta, so I have given my cured meats a rest (this one time).
The vegetables can be roasted the night before, the cheese grated and prepped for a quick and easy breakfast or lunch. Croutons are also a great substitute for hash browns.
Enjoy it; you’ll be sure it’s “some good”.
- Eggs: 4
- Half and half cream: ¼ cup
- Hash browns: ¼ cup
- Crushed Red Chili Peppers: ½ teaspoon or adjust according to taste
- Mixed Roasted Vegetables: 1 cup
- Roasted Red Pepper : 10-12 pieces
- Tomato and Basil Havarti Cheese: ¼ cup cubed
- Shredded Marble Cheese: 1 and a half cup
- Parsley and Basil: A few tablespoons each
- Bread Crumbs: ½ cup
- Salt and Pepper: to taste
- Olive Oil: to drizzle (about 1 tablespoon)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a roasting tray arrange your cut veggies (bell peppers, broccoli, onion), drizzle with olive oil and season with a very small amount of salt and pepper. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes or till the veggies are slightly roasted but not dry.
- Put the hash browns in another baking dish, sprinkle crush chili on top and bake till nice and crispy, turning once or twice during baking.
- Whip eggs with cream, season with salt and pepper. Keep in mind not to use too much salt as the roasted veggies already has a little salt and the cheese is naturally salty.
- In the baking dish, arrange the hash brown potatoes in the bottom, then the veggies, the roasted peppers, cubed cheese and herbs in layers.
- Add the egg mixture. Cover with cheese and sprinkle breadcrumbs.
- Cook in the oven for 30 minutes or till the middle is not jiggling any more.
- Serve with buttered toast.