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Ham & Cheese Breakfast Casserole

April/May 2006

Your rating: None Average: 3.7 (207 votes)

This healthy update of a traditionally rich ham-and-cheese breakfast strata is made lighter primarily by losing a few egg yolks and using nonfat milk. Gruyère cheese has a delicious, nutty aroma and flavor, which means that with the relatively small amount in this recipe you still get a big impact. To finish the makeover use nutritious, fiber-rich, whole-grain bread instead of white. The results: plenty of flavor, half the calories and one-third the fat of the original.



READER'S COMMENT:
"I used Southwestern style Eggbeaters, a little bit of ham and cheddar and chipotle chili powder as the spice. I topped it with thin slice of vine-ripened tomatoes...and it was delicious. "

Makes: 6 servings

Active Time:

Total Time:

Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 cup nonfat milk
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 5 cups chopped spinach, wilted (see Tip)
  • 4 cups whole-grain bread, crusts removed if desired, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 1/2 pound, 4-6 slices)
  • 1 cup diced ham steak, (5 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup chopped jarred roasted red peppers
  • 3/4 cup shredded Gruyère, or Swiss cheese

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a 7-by-11-inch glass baking dish or a 2-quart casserole with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk eggs, egg whites and milk in a medium bowl. Add mustard, rosemary and pepper; whisk to combine. Toss spinach, bread, ham and roasted red peppers in a large bowl. Add the egg mixture and toss well to coat. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and push down to compact. Cover with foil.
  3. Bake until the custard has set, 40 to 45 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with cheese and continue baking until the pudding is puffed and golden on top, 15 to 20 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 15 to 20 minutes before serving.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare casserole through Step 2; refrigerate overnight. Let stand at room temperature while the oven preheats. Bake as directed in Step 3.
  • Tip: To wilt spinach, rinse thoroughly with cool water. Transfer to a large microwave-safe bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and punch several holes in it. Microwave on High until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Squeeze out excess moisture before adding the spinach to the recipe.

Nutrition

Per serving: 286 calories; 10 g fat (4 g sat, 3 g mono); 167 mg cholesterol; 23 g carbohydrates; 23 g protein; 4 g fiber; 813 mg sodium; 509 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (70% daily value), Folate (37% dv), Calcium (30% dv), Vitamin C (20% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 1 1/2

Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 2 medium-fat meat


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Recipe Categories

Ethnic/Regional
American
Ease of Preparation
Easy
Total Time
More than 1 hour
Servings
6
Main Ingredient
Eggs
Pork
Preparation/ Technique
Bake
Meal/Course
Brunch
Dinner

Type of Dish
Main dish, meat
Publication
April/May 2006
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