How to Make an Easy Brunch Strata

by R.B. Quinn and Min Merrell
ham and cheese strata

It’s just like making little sandwiches. Then you pour the egg mixture over it.

Sunday morning after a glamorous Saturday night is easy to ignore until it arrives. But, after your carriage has turned back into a pumpkin, you can continue living the dream well into Sunday afternoon—hot coffee, the New York Times crossword, and morning news programs that drift into afternoon sports. That’s where a make-ahead and ready-to-bake strata comes in handy.

A brunch strata is simply a main dish bread pudding. While you dance the night away, the bread is busy soaking in egg/milk custard in the refrigerator. Out of the oven the next morning, it’s hot, puffy golden brown—Cinderella all over again. Flavor your strata with sweet or savory ingredients just like you would when designing an omelet.

Our two Cheater Chef stratas are spectacular and, better yet, they look fantastic in the morning. Both start with a French baguette—you need bread with some good crust and character to hold up to the custard. Then stuff the fillings between the bread slices. We used paper thin smoky salty speck ham and Jarlsberg Swiss for the savory version. The lemon ricotta filling in the other is just sweetened cheese with lemon zest. Both seem big city fancy and far better than a cold Danish. Serve either with a touch of maple syrup. The lemon ricotta benefits from sweetened fresh blueberries, blackberries or even peaches. Eat in robe and slippers.

The whole is definitely greater than the sum of the parts in this Lemon Ricotta French Toast Strata. We like how the bread slices are still visible, but soft and cohesive after baking.

brunch strata

Related Posts

Comments are closed.