Photo Credit: Lauren Volo
Strata are the perfect make-ahead food to serve when you’re having guests staying the night. Prepare it the night before, chill it in the refrigerator, and pop it in the oven for 50 minutes when you wake up.
Sausage, Spinach, and Apple Strata
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound breakfast sausage casings removed
- 2 shallots chopped
- 1 apple such as Honeycrisp, chopped into ‚1-inch pieces
- 1 10-ounce box chopped frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
- 8 cups cubed Italian bread from a 1-pound loaf
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, for the baking dish
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 6 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat the oil in a heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook about 5 minutes, breaking it up into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Add the shallots and sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the apple and the spinach and sauté over medium-low heat for another 2 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Place half of the bread cubes in a buttered 3-quart baking dish. Sprinkle half of the mozzarella over the bread, then top with half of the spinach mixture. Repeat layering.
- Whisk the milk, cream, eggs, salt, and pepper in a large bowl and pour evenly over the strata. Top with the Parmesan cheese. Chill the strata, covered with plastic wrap, at least 2 hours and up to 12 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the strata uncovered until puffed, golden brown, and cooked through, about 50 minutes. A thin knife inserted in the middle of the strata should come out clean. If the top browns too quickly, cover with a sheet of aluminum foil. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.