Just when I got myself into a breakfast groove of cottage cheese or yogurt with strawberries and blueberries, I went ahead and made this. Good luck trying to convince my taste buds that my dairy and fruit combo is just as delicious. I was flipping through some of my saved recipes looking for something new and different to try for breakfast.
I had about six different versions of breakfast casseroles and stratas saved, all a slight bit different, but all consisting of bread, eggs, cheese, and a variety of other ingredients. I took the idea and ran with it, and ended up with this dish of bread-y, cheesy amazing breakfast-ness.
I combined cubed bread with bacon, mushrooms, spinach and FOUR different cheeses. Along with eggs, of course. The result is only the most amazing breakfast I’ve eaten in I don’t know how long. I loved how the bread towards the bottom was soft and the cubes that sat on the top of the baking dish got toasted and crunchy underneath a layer of cheddar cheese. I’ve totally convinced myself that it’s healthy because it has not one, but TWO vegetables! Mushrooms and spinach, for the win!
I call this a breakfast strata, but you can totally make it for brunch, lunch or dinner, as well. Serve it with a light salad, or with nothing else at all. I guess if I eat it for a meal other than breakfast, then I can still have my berries and… success!
Heat 2 tablespoons of the reserved bacon drippings in a 10-inch skillet, and place over medium heat. Add the sliced mushrooms, season with fresh black pepper, and cook until all of the moisture has been released and has evaporated. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and return to the heat.
Add the spinach to the pan and toss, cooking just until it is slightly wilted, but still bright green. Remove from the pan and turn off the heat.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs until completely blended, seasoning them with salt and fresh black pepper. Add all of the remaining ingredients into the bowl with the eggs and fold together with a spatula until everything is evenly distributed and all of the bread has been moistened.
Turn the mixture into a 1½-quart baking dish, pressing down if necessary (the mixture will sit about 1-inch about the top of the dish). Sprinkle the top with the cheddar cheese and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the strata is set and the top is golden brown. Sprinkle chopped chives on top and serve. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.