Monte Cristo Overnight Breakfast Strata
(Serves 10-12) Baking time, 60-70 minutes.
8 large eggs
2 cups milk (can use 2% milk instead of whole milk)
1 cup cream or half & half (can use 2% milk instead of cream)
2 tsp Dijon mustard
4 TBSP melted butter
1 ½ tsp salt (prefer coarse sea salt)
2 tsp coarse ground pepper
1 large loaf French bread (prepared ahead)*
8 ounces deli sliced ham
8 ounces deli sliced turkey breast (optional)
3 cups shredded mild Swiss cheese (or havarti or white farmer’s cheese)
3 TBSP seedless raspberry or strawberry jam
*Prepare French bread. (I like the crust left on, but crust can be removed if preferred.) Thin slice 1/3rd of the loaf. Cut the rest of the loaf into one-inch cubes. Set aside to dry out for at least an hour. Beat together eggs, milk, cream, mustard, salt and pepper in a bowl until creamy. Blend in melted butter.
Spread jam on thin slices of bread. Cut ham and turkey breast lengthwise and crosswise into one-inch pieces. Keep separated.
Grease bottom of 9x13x2 baking dish. Add ingredients by layers in this order:
- ½ of bread cubes
- Layer ham over the bread
- Arrange the jam-spread pieces of bread on top of ham.
- Spread half of the cheese over the bread. (The rest of the cheese will go on during baking)
- Spread the layer of turkey breast (optional)
- Top with the rest of the bread cubes (might not need them all)
- Pour the egg mixture evenly over the layers. Cover with foil wrap and refrigerate at least two hours, or overnight.
In the morning 1½ hours before breakfast, take strata out of refrigerator. Leave covered and place in cold oven. Turn oven on to 350 degrees. When oven reaches full temperature, bake for 30 minutes covered. Uncover and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Continue baking for 20-40 minutes or until middle is set. May be some water around edges. That will absorb as it sits.
Let sit 15 minutes. Dust lightly with powdered sugar. Cut and serve hot. Serve warm maple syrup on the side.
Created by Sunni Jeffers, 2012