Today we’re hearkening back to an old family favorite with a recipe for Easter Egg Strata. A strata is similar to a frittata or quiche, and was originally made by layering the bread and filling to create layers, or strata, in the dish. However, this recipe follows the simpler technique of a bread pudding by mixing everything together in one dish.
This egg strata is visually appealing, moist, cheesy and delicious, and, perhaps best of all, it is extremely easy to make. The recipe calls for eight slices of bread, and we recommend using crusty artisan bread or French baguette, as their thicker texture helps to better absorb the liquid. However, day-old or even stale bread will also work great.
This recipe calls for one pound of grated sharp cheddar cheese, and to further simplify the process I decided to use the grating attachment on my food processor, which did the trick in about 60 seconds. We prefer the creamy, full flavor of good white cheddar for this recipe, but I’ve also made it with regular sharp cheddar (Cracker Barrel) and it was still great.
The strata needs to be refrigerated for several hours before baking, which enables the bread to fully absorb the egg, milk and cheese mixture, and overnight is even better. The dish will puff up quite a bit as it bakes, but expect it to deflate after removing from the oven. Allow it to stand for about five to ten minutes before serving.
The recipe is perfect as is, but use your imagination to enhance it by changing the type of cheese or adding meat, fresh herbs, veggies, or smoked salmon. We’re sure Mrs. Hanson won’t object.