Let's Dish With Linda Lou

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Holiday Breakfast Casserole

Thanksgiving Breakfast Casserole (10)

Thanksgiving Breakfast Casserole (1)

Thanksgiving Breakfast Casserole (9)

Thanksgiving Breakfast Casserole (8)

On Thanksgiving, a lot of us have family over for the holidays. In the morning, you want to have breakfast for your family but you don’t want to make it a big ordeal. I have a great idea that will feed everyone, and hold them over until the big meal. This dish is done casseroles-style, it’s my Holiday Breakfast Casserole.

My Holiday Breakfast Casserole can be made the day before so all you need to do is pop it in the oven the morning of.

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Holiday Breakfast Casserole (2)

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Olive Oil

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Italian Chicken Sausage

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Sweet Italian Sausage (1)

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Stuffing (4)

I’m also going back to my hanging herb garden to grab some fresh sage and Italian flat-leaf parsley.

Sage

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Holiday Breakfast Casserole (26)

Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Stuffing (2)

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Stuffing (1)

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Holiday Breakfast Casserole (22)

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Holiday Breakfast Casserole (29)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (5)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (7)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (9)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (8)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (10)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (1)

Holday Breakfast Casserole (2)

 

 

 

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 12 hours, overnight to chill
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Yields: 8 servings
Equipment: 9 x 13x 3 casserole dish, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, 12-inch sauté pan, box grater

Ingredients:
2 pounds of hot Italian chicken sausage, casings removed (substitute mild chicken sausage or breakfast sage sausage)
1 teaspoon dried sage
2 Granny Smith apples, 1-inch dice
1 large sweet onion, diced
2 tablespoons fresh sage, finely chopped
2 tablespoons freshly chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley (reserve 1 tablespoon for garnish)
12 large eggs, beaten
2 cups half-and-half
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons butter, unsalted plus extra for greasing the casserole dish

1 loaf of Pepperidge Farm Swirl Pumpkin Cinnamon bread, cut into 2-inch cubes
2 1/2 cups of Monterey Jack cheese, freshly grated

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375-degrees F.
On the day before serving, cut the pumpkin bread into 2-inch bite-size cubes. Spread them out in one even layer on each of the 2 rimmed sheet pans. Drizzle olive oil over the bread cubes. Sprinkle with Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp.

Note: Keep a close eye on the bread while baking. I’m using fresh bread here so it may take a little longer to become golden brown. If using day-old bread or stale bread, it may brown faster.

In a large sauté pan over medium heat add the sausage, dried sage, and a very light sprinkling of Kosher salt. Cook until browned through 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer the sausage with a slotted spoon to a bowl and set aside.

Without cleaning the pan, still on medium heat add unsalted butter, apples, diced onion, 1 tablespoon of the chopped sage, and a light sprinkling of Kosher salt and pepper.  Cook until the onions have softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the apple mixture to a bowl and set aside.

In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, 1 tablespoon Kosher salt, 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper.

Grease a large casserole dish with the butter. Layer in half the cubed pumpkin bread, half the cooked sausage, half the apple mixture, half the fresh chopped sage, and half the shredded cheese. Repeat the process with the other half of the same ingredients, ending with the shredded cheese. Slowly pour the egg mixture all over the top. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
Remove the casserole dish from the fridge 30 minutes before baking. Replace the plastic wrap with foil. Bake for 40 minutes, then remove the foil and continue baking, 10 to 15 minutes more until the top is golden brown and slightly crisp.

Garnish with Italian flat-leaf parsley. Let rest for around 10 minutes and serve warm.

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Italian Sausage, Asparagus, And Fontina Cheese Frittata Muffins

Mini Sausage, Asparagus, And Truffle Fontina Cheese Frittatas

Today’s the day to clean out my refrigerator. I have quite a few eggs, ricotta cheese, and part of orange bell pepper on hand. Making a frittata makes perfect sense.

I’m doing Italian Sausage, Asparagus, And Fontina Cheese Frittata Muffins.

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Mini Sausage, Asparagus, And Truffle Fontina Cheese Frittatas (2)

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Yields: 24 frittatas
Equipment: 2 (12-cup) muffin tin pans, large mixing bowl, whisk, box grater, non-stick cooking spray, 12-inch sauté pan

Ingredients:
1 pound of sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
12 large eggs,
1 cup of ricotta cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup of half-and-half
1 1/2 cups of Truffle fontina cheese, freshly grated (reserve 1/2 cup)
1 1/2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
1 1/4 teaspoons of freshly ground black pepper
1 (8-ounce) package of thawed (Birds Eye Steam Fresh) frozen asparagus, cut into 2-inch pieces sliced on the bias
1/4 cup of orange bell pepper, finely diced
2 tablespoons of fresh chives, finely minced
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme leaves, chopped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
Start by spraying both muffin tin pans with non-stick cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl break a dozen eggs. Add ricotta, half-and-half, Kosher salt,  and fresh ground black pepper whisk to combine. Add freshly grated fontina cheese whisk to combine. Next, add the fresh chives, thyme, and asparagus, stir to combine. Set aside.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat add the sausage. Using a wooden spoon break up the sausage. Stirring occasionally, cook until no longer pink, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the finely diced bell pepper, stir to combine, cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.

Transfer the cooked sausage to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.

Combine the cooled sausage mixture with the egg mixture, stir to combine. Fill the muffin cup halfway with the frittata mixture. Sprinkle the reserved grated fontina evenly of the tops of each frittata. Bake until the eggs are just set, 15 to 20 minutes. Allow the Italian Sausage, Asparagus, Fontina Cheese Frittata Muffins to cool before running a rubber spatula around the outside of each one to ensure easy removal.

Transfer to a large serving platter. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Farro Breakfast Bowl

Farro Breakfast Bowl (3)

Farro is an ancient grain from Rome. Its delicious nutty flavor and slightly chewy texture remind me of a lot of barley. Farro has been a long time coming. You just couldn’t get your hands on it anywhere! Now, it’s readily available in your local grocery store.

I’m showing two pictures of my Farro Breakfast Bowls, one that’s topped with an egg, and one below without. That’s where Steve and I have a strong difference of opinion. I’m not even sure if “opinion” is even the right word. I’m no fan of the fried egg.  To be fair though, eggs are a big part of any breakfast and Steve loves them, that’s the reason for two pictures.

Anyway, this Farro Breakfast Bowl is easy to make while combining great flavor, color, and texture. Here’s how this dish comes together.

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Let’s talk about Farro. I took a screenshot of this brand because it’s the one I’ve used for this dish. You know I love to take help from the grocery store, this cooks up in about 25 minutes and includes some Porcini mushrooms. I’m SOLD!

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Shoepeg Corn

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Chives (2)

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: 1 (12-inch) sautèpan, 1 (4-quart) saucepot with a tight-fitting lid.

Ingredients:
1 cup of uncooked Farro
3 cups of chicken stock, unsalted
1 pound of Italian chicken sausage, casings removed (substitute pork or turkey Italian sausage)
1 heaping cup of frozen white shoepeg corn, thawed
1 cup of diced red bell pepper, 1-inch dice
1 cup of diced yellow bell pepper, 1-inch dice
1 cup of diced onion, 1-inch diced
1/2 cup of carrots, 1-inch dice
1 tablespoon (3 cloves) of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup Pistachios, roughly chopped (optional)
7 ounces of Feta cheese, cubed
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese,  freshhly grated
2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
2 tablespoons of fresh chives, minced
2 tablespoons of fresh mint, chopped
1 fried egg (optional), cooked to the temperature of your choosing)

Directions For Farro:
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Feel free to use either water or unsalted chicken stock for cooking the Farro. In place of the butter, I substitute olive oil.

Tip: Cook the sausage and Farro at the same time.

Directions:
Start by rinsing and draining the Farro using a mesh sieve. In a 4-quart saucepot bring the chicken stock and 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt up to a rolling boil. Add the Farro, stir to combine. Simmer the Farro as if you are cooking pasta. Once the Farro is al dente, 15 to 20 minutes, drain any remaining liquid through a mesh sieve.

Next, in a large sautè pan on medium heat, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Using a wooden spoon start by breaking up the sausage. Turn and toss the sausage allowing it to brown on all sides or until the sausage is complete brown with no pink spots, around 10 minutes.

Add the onion, garlic, diced peppers and carrots to the pan. Season with Kosher salt and black pepper. Stir and continue cooking until vegetables become tender another 7-10 minutes.

Don’t worry about the sausage bits sticking to the bottom of the pan because once the vegetables are added, they’ll release their water allowing those bits to be released.

Using the back of a wooden spoon, scrape as much of those brown bits off the bottom of the pan, that’s all flavor!

Transfer the cooked Farro and shoepeg corn to a large mixing bowl. Using a slotted spoon, add the cooked sausage and vegetable mixture to the bowl. Next, add the pistachios (optional), Parmesan cheese, cubed feta, and fresh herbs, then toss together.

Ladle the Farro mixture into a serving bowl and top with a fried egg (optional).

Serve hot!

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