A family-friendly make-ahead meal!
This layered casserole-style dish is a hearty and satisfying way to start the day. Because it needs to sit for a bit before baking, it’s ideal to assemble the night before. I also love that it’s a great ‘clean out the fridge’ recipe as you can vary the vegetables with whatever you have on hand. No sausage? Make it vegetarian, or swap in cooked bacon, ham or even chicken. New York-style bagels are preferable rather than the denser, chewier Montreal-style ones; if you have herbed bagels or bread, the flavour is even more fantastic. Gluten-free bagels and dairy-free milk and cheese work well in this recipe also.
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) olive oil, divided
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 red pepper, seeded and diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup (70 g) chopped kale or spinach
- 1 pound (454 g) Italian sausage (mild or hot), casings removed
- 6 eggs
- 1 cup (250 mL) milk
- 1 teaspoon (1 g) each dried thyme leaves and oregano
- 2 teaspoons (10 mL) Worcestershire sauce
- Few pinches salt and pepper
- 8 cups (280 g) cubed bagels or brioche-style bread (in 3/4 inch or 2 cm pieces)
- 3/4 cup (65 g) shredded cheese (I used a combo of cheddar, Swiss and mozzarella)
- Grease bottom and sides of a 9″ x 13″ baking dish with olive oil. Set aside.
- Heat remaining olive oil in a medium-sized skillet; sauté onion and peppers over medium heat for 3 – 4 minutes, until softened. Add garlic and kale and sauté 2 minutes more. Remove vegetables to a clean bowl and set aside.
- In the same pan, cook sausage on medium-high heat until browned, breaking apart meat with the edge of a spatula so it is in small pieces. Once cooked, set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, thyme, oregano, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Spread bagel or bread pieces in the baking dish. Sprinkle vegetables and sausage over top, using a fork to tuck them into the bread layer.
- Pour egg and milk mixture over the bread. Press down with a spatula so that all bagel or bread pieces are saturated with the liquid. Cover with a lid or foil and refrigerate for at least one or up to 12 hours.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350F. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes. Remove foil or lid and sprinkle cheese on top then bake for an additional 10 – 15 minutes, until golden brown and puffed up.
- Cut into squares and serve.
It’s such a thrill, isn’t it, when you take a dish like this out of the oven and the smells and looks of that browned cheese just say “Eat me now!”
I didn’t think my husband was going to let me take a photo, as he was so eager to dive in! 🙂
I can see that!
Great idea. I’m surprised the bagels don’t make it tough? I guess they get enough liquid to soften? Like you said, a good way to empty your fridge!
As the recipe notes, it is best suited to softer New York style bagels rather than Montreal-style which I do think would be tough in this dish. Making another one today to finish up some spinach, tomatoes and mushrooms that need to get ‘moved along’. 🙂