strata-gies are endless. This one uses big chunks of
rustic bread for pleasing texture, plus bacon and
three cheeses: fontina, Parmesan and Gouda.
only I were the kind of person who could wake up easily,
bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready to tackle the day. You
know, Beyonce-level, "I woke up like this" alert,
with a cup of coffee in one hand and a perfectly composed,
Instagram-ready breakfast in the other.
mornings are a battle with the sun and alarms. Toiling in
the kitchen is the last thing I want to do, and I suspect my
fellow sleepyheads agree. Between hustling to get ready for
work or bustling kids out to school, itís easy to skip the
meal altogether in favor of the grab-and-go route, nabbing a
sweet pastry at the neighborhood coffee shop or hitting a
drive-thru for a greasy breakfast sammie. Not that these are
bad, necessarily, but are they the best choices? Probably
does not need to be an elaborate affair, but it also doesnít
have to be a bowl of soggy cereal. Making breakfast ahead of
time balances the need for extra Zís with a satisfying
meal that starts the day on the right foot.
a savory bread pudding or casserole, is a favorite in my
home. Taking advantage of otherwise stale bread, itís a
cheesy, satisfying start to the day. A basic recipe of
cheese, egg and bacon is a blank canvas for improvisation.
Omit the meat, and sub in mushrooms or peppers for a
vegetarian-friendly dish, or switch out the cheeses for what
you have on hand. For the best results, allow the dish to
sit in your fridge overnight, so that the bread thoroughly
soaks up all the custard. Just set in your oven when you
wake up, and go about your morning; itíll be hot by the
time youíre ready to walk out the door. Alternatively, you
can bake ahead and slice off a cube to enjoy at the office.
is the ultimate make-ahead breakfast, and it can be made in
a slow cooker set to low. Another blank canvas, it can go
traditional with standard mix-ins like granola and berries,
but we decided to have some fun. Our carrot cake oatmeal is
a playful, unexpected treat for mornings, evoking flavors
from the rich dessert but without the guilt.
favorite that lends itself to tinkering is a yogurt parfait.
Layered in a 4-ounce Mason (or other brand) jar, it makes
for a convenient grab-and-go breakfast without the added
sugar of store-bought varieties.
couple of these recipes on the weekend, put them in the
fridge and enjoy your extra few minutes of snoozing. Stumble
out of bed, and greet the day on your own terms.
frozen or fresh fruit
teaspoons honey, agave syrup or maple syrup
plain Greek yogurt, or your favorite yogurt
tablespoon chia seeds
each of four 4-ounce jars, layer the ingredients in order
and seal. They keep several days in the refrigerator.
SLOW COOKER OATMEAL
10 servings (about 10 cups)
cups whole milk or almond milk
teaspoon fine salt
butter the inside of your slow cooker. Combine the oats,
water, milk and salt in the slow cooker. Set to low; leave
overnight. In the morning, add your desired toppings to hot,
formula above acts as a great base for savory or sweet
cake overnight oats: Trust us on this. Follow the
instructions as above but add: 2 cups grated carrot, 2
tablespoons golden raisins, 2 teaspoons vanilla, 1 1/2
tablespoons brown sugar, 2/3 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4
teaspoon nutmeg and 2 tablespoons chopped nuts (walnuts,
pecans or almonds), optional. Follow remaining instructions
savory slow cooker oatmeal: Omit the milk and water,
replacing with 8 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth. Follow
remaining instructions as written. In the morning, add 2
tablespoons cheddar per serving. Season with salt and
pepper. For more flavor, diced green onions add brightness.
AND TRIPLE-CHEESE STRATA
30 minutes (plus overnight)
you call it a casserole or a savory bread pudding, an
Italian strata is the perfect make-ahead dish, nourishing
and satisfying with a range of flavors. Just prep the night
before, and pop in the oven in the morning. The best part?
You can use up stale bread, minimizing kitchen waste.
ounces (1 package) pancetta or bacon, chopped
small yellow onions, diced
clove garlic, minced
cups whole milk
finely grated smoked Gouda cheese
cup finely grated Parmesan
cup whipping cream
tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
rustic French or Italian bread, cut in 1-inch cubes
grated fontina cheese (about 8 ounces)
a large skillet over medium heat; cook bacon until crisp.
Transfer bacon to a dish. Drain excess fat from skillet, but
donít wipe out pan. Add the onion and garlic; cook until
golden brown and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Remove from
Whisk the eggs, milk, Gouda, Parmesan, cream, oregano, salt
and pepper in a large bowl.
Butter a 13-by-9-by-2-inch ceramic or glass baking dish
(about 3 quarts). Spread one third of the bread in the pan,
top with a third of the bacon, then one third of the onion.
Pour one third of the egg mixture over. Repeat layering with
the remaining bread, bacon, onion and egg mixture. Cover and
leave in refrigerator overnight, to allow the bread to soak
up the custard.
cook, heat the oven to 350 degrees. Allow the strata to come
to temperature on the counter. Top with grated fontina. Bake
uncovered until golden brown and cooked through, about 50