Most people have that one food that they buy convinced they will eat it in no time, but after buying it, it just sits around forever, or until it gets bad. For me it is bread. I buy bread more than I eat it and I don’t even feel like I buy bread that much. Yet for some reason, even after I have made plans for the bread I bought, after day two or three it just ends up sitting in my fridge. People who open my fridge frequently know they will find bread. They just have to check for expiration dates.
I also hate throwing away food unless it is bad. Bread is one of those foods that don’t go bad as fast and that can be easily repurposed. There are so many ways you can reuse bread so even when my fridge is piling up with bread, I start thinking of ways I can use them. Two of my favorites are bread pudding when I want something sweet and stratas when I want something savory.
For those who aren’t familiar with stratas, think of them as a savory bread pudding. Apart from stratas being a great way to get rid of bread, you can also use them to get rid of other ingredients in your fridge like cheeses or vegetables. I had leftover rosemary and olive oil bread so I chose ingredients that I thought would go well with it and came up with this strata. It is very cheesy and packed full with sausage and vegetables. Be sure to give it a try or put your own spin on it!
Sausage, Mushroom and Spinach Strata
This recipe yields one 9 or 8 inch square pan.
- 6 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1 tsp mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- About 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
- About 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 4 to 5 cups cubed or torn bread
- 1 pound breakfast sausage
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1/2 an onion, minced
- 8 ounces mushrooms, chopped
- 4 ounces spinach
- 1 1/2 cup shredded swiss cheese
In a large bowl, beat the eggs, milk, mustard, cayenne, salt and pepper together. You can taste for salt and adjust accordingly (if you don’t mind tasting raw eggs). Fold your bread into the egg mixture until fully combined. Let the mixture sit overnight or for at least 1 hour.
Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Grease a 9 or 8 inch square baking pan.
Pour oil in a pan over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions then sausage and mushroom then mix. When the sausage is almost completely cooked, add the spinach and mix until the sausage is all cooked and the spinach has wilted.
Spread out half of the bread mixture in your prepared pan. Top it with half of your sausage mixture then sprinkle with half of your cheese. Spread the remaining bread mixture over the cheese then add the remaining sausage mixture and cheese. Cover with foil (you can grease the top of the foil if you are afraid the cheese will stick). Bake for 30 minutes then uncover and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes. Let it sit for at least 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!