For special occasion breakfasts like holidays, strata are a godsend to busy home cooks. Prep and assemble this sophisticated dish, made with Armanino Meatballs, and refrigerate it overnight for easy baking the next morning.
2 tbsp olive oil, plus additional for pan
½ large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
½ cup chopped red bell peppers
5 oz baby spinach leaves
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 lb Armanino Italian Style Meatballs (½ bag)
3 cups whole milk
1 ½ tsp kosher salt
1 ½ tsp Italian seasoning
½ tsp crushed red pepper
½ tsp ground black pepper
8 cups cubed soft Italian bread (about 1 pound loaf)
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese or mozzarella-provolone blend, divided
marinara sauce, for serving
Grease 13×9-inch baking dish with olive oil; set aside. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in medium skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions and peppers; sauté about 5 minutes or until tender and lightly browned. Add spinach and garlic; sauté 1-2 minutes or until spinach is just wilted. Remove from heat.
Whisk eggs, milk, and seasonings in large bowl until well blended.
Halve or quarter the meatballs. Add to egg mixture along with the sauteed vegetables; stir to combine. Add bread cubes; mix gently.
Spoon half the mixture into prepared pan. Top with 2 cups cheese, the remaining bread mixture and the remaining 1 cup cheese. Let stand at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour before baking, or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
When ready to bake, heat oven to 325°F for at least 15 minutes. Bake, uncovered, 45-60 minutes or until eggs are set. Serve hot or at room temperature with warm marinara sauce. (Note: If baking a refrigerated casserole, let stand at room temperature while oven is heating).
Whip up breakfast the night before and pop it in the oven in the morning! Feel free to mix up the vegetables. Try using kale or Swiss chard, broccoli florets, cherry tomatoes, or cubed zucchini.
Stale bread will soak up the egg mixture better. Allow bread cubes to dry out for a few hours on a baking sheet.