Thursday, October 9, 2014

Apple Strata

A breakfast dish that I like to make is strata.  It is a good way to use up day-old bread with some things from the pantry or fridge and perhaps produce.  Everything is assembled the night before and baking it in the morning would take about an hour before it is ready to be consumed.  I don't know why, but I like custardy dish for breakfast; it gives me warm and fuzzy feeling.  And especially with a cooler weather forecast for the rest of the week, one needs to make this quite often.

Apple Strata

Serves 4 to 6

6 slices day-old sourdough bread, cubed, divided
4 ounces cream cheese, cubed
1 apple, peeled and chopped
½ cup raisins 
6 large eggs
1 ¼ cups whole milk
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
Dash of ground nutmeg
Confectioners' sugar or maple syrup for topping

Place half the bread cubes in a lightly sprayed or oiled 8-by-11 ½-inch baking dish.  Distribute cream cheese cubes over bread cubes.  Top with apples and raisins, and cover with remaining bread cubes.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg.  Pour over bread mixture in dish.  Be sure bread is completely covered.  Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375F.  Bring strata to room temperature before baking.  Bake, uncovered, until set, 50 to 55 minutes.  Let stand for 10 minutes.  Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar, or pass maple syrup at the table.  Cut into squares and serve.

Source:  The Big Book of Breakfast by Maryana Vollstedt

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