Creole Breakfast Bread Pudding
This dish originally made a splash in my cookbook Potluck and let me tell you, it's a dish worth making the next time you need a hearty breakfast casserole that feeds a crowd. If you cannot find linguica sausage, simply substitute any smoked pork sausage that you like.
- 1/2 pound Linguica sausage, removed from the casing and chopped
- 1/2 cup minced yellow onions
- 1/4 cup minced green bell pepper
- 1/3 cup sliced green onions
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 cup melted butter
- 8 cups day-old French bread, torn into 1-inch cubes
- 2 1/2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 8 large eggs, beaten
- 1/2 pound Pepper Jack Cheese, grated
- 1/2 pound Monterey Jack Cheese, grated
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
- 3/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 325°F.
Heat a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and cook until golden brown and the fat is rendered, about 5 minutes. Add the onions and bell peppers, and sauté until soft, 3 minutes. Add the green onions and stir well. Add the white wine and reduce slightly, stirring, about 1 minute over high heat. Remove from the heat.
Place the bread in a large mixing bowl. Add the milk and cream and stir well. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Pour the melted butter into a 10- by 13-inch casserole dish, and coat the sides and bottom evenly. Pour any extra butter into the bread mixture.
Add the sausage mixture to the bread mixture. Add the eggs, grated cheeses, salt, black pepper and cayenne, and quickly fold mixture together. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the casserole from the oven and increase the temperature to 375ºF. Spread the sour cream evenly over the top and cover with grated Parmesan. Bake uncovered for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the casserole is lightly browned on top.
Yield: 8 to 10 servings
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