Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Breakfast Casserole

My favorite (very dairy-filled) breakfast casserole starts with croutons, cream of mushroom soup, milk & heavy cream. Not exactly MSPI friendly, eh? Well, I've revamped it and it's fabulous! I'd caution against using any packaged croutons. All croutons I've looked at have either whey and/or some type of cheese (usually parm). Instead of using croutons, I buy a loaf of artisan garlic clove bread (as in studded inside with whole garlic's df/sf!), cube it and let it dry on the counter (uncovered) overnight. The cream of mushroom soup is the most work intensive part of this, and it's not that bad. The end result is worth it!

2-3 cups dried, day-old bread cubes
1 3/4 c rice milk, divided
1 1/2 c plain coffee creamer, divided
8 oz mushrooms (finely chop about 3 mushrooms, slice the rest)
4 Tbsp oil or MSPI safe margarine
4 Tbsp flour
6 eggs
1 package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed of excess water
1 lb MSPI friendly breakfast sausage, cooked & crumbled
1 to 2 c Daiya cheese shreds
Garlic powder
Onion powder
Salt & pepper
Celery seed
Cumin (just a little!)
Ground mustard
MSPI safe worcestershire sauce
any other herb or spice that floats your boat

Before beginning, spray a 9x13 with cooking spray, then put the bread cubes in it. Sprinkle the cubes with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, a little celery seed, a little cumin (just a touch!), a little paprika (just a touch!), some basil, oregano, parsley, chives, marjarom, and any other herb you like. The more variety of herbs you use, the better it seems to turn out. Don't be shy! Now set that aside and let's make the mushroom sauce...

In a large skillet, heat the oil or margarine. Add the finely diced mushrooms only (reserve the sliced ones for later) and cook until they darken and soften. Sprinkle mushrooms with the flour and cook for a minute or two, stirring constantly. Add 3/4 cup rice milk and 1/2 cup coffee creamer, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly until it thickens. Season to taste with salt, pepper, a little onion and garlic powder, a pinch of mustard powder and a dash of MSPI safe worcestershire. Allow to cool. While it's cooling, top bread cubes with spinach, sliced mushrooms & sausage.

Now, in a large bowl, combine the cooled mushroom sauce, remaining rice milk, coffee creamer and eggs until smooth. Pour over everything in the pan. Cover with foil and let sit in the fridge several hours or overnight. When you're ready to cook it, remove foil, top with Daiya cheese shreds, recover and bake at 375 for an hour, removing foil during last 10-15 minutes of cooking.

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