The Alter clan—or most of them—had a grand morning today. We slept later than usual, and then Colin made his usual run to Starbucks—now that’s an addiction I don’t understand, but they don’t want to make coffee at home, and I’ve stopped buying it for them. I had decided to make a breakfast casserole. With twelve of us for breakfast which would be our only “big” meal at home, days ago I started hunting through my cookbook that holds breakfast dishes—several egg and sausage casseroles, an enchilada casserole, a Velveeta cheesy bacon casserole discarded because I didn’t like the picture, casseroles that only feed six or eight. I needed something that would feed all of us without doubling the recipe, and I remembered having this casserole at Janet and Dave Douglass’ house several years ago.
It’s one of those that requires overnight refrigeration, so I had most of the parts ready last night and popped it in the fridge when we came home from Joe T. Garcia’s. I put it in a cold oven, even though it had been warming to room temperature for about forty-five minutes. I’m always afraid glass baking dishes, even Pyrex, will crack with a sudden change of heat.
At first I thought I’d fix waffles for the grandkids—ages 5-8—but I realized that would mean only seven eating a casserole meant for 12. Some of them ate heartily; some didn’t. Christian brought the remnants of a potato casserole he’d made for a business breakfast, and I made biscuits. A hearty, last-all-day breakfast.
And then they were all in a whirlwind of packing the cars and leaving. Tonight, Sophie and I are in a quiet, empty house. We’re both a little tired, and I think she’s sort of shell-shocked.
But here’s the recipe:
Sausage and Egg Casserole
Spread 8 slices fresh bread, cube, or croutons (about 3 cups) on bottom of greased 9x13 pan (I used garlic cheese croutons)
1-2 lbs. pork sausage (I used the full 2 lbs.), browned and drained
2 c. grated cheddar cheese (I do not like the pre-grated kind you can get in the grocery)
1 4-oz. can mushrooms stems and pieces, drained (optional and I omitted it because some of us are not mushroom eaters)
4 eggs beaten
¾ tsp. dry mustard
3 cups milk, divided
1 can cream of mushroom soup (you can get by with that even with non-mushroom eaters)
Spreadbottom of pan with bread cubes or croutons. Layer sausage, cheese and mushrooms. Beat eggs and add to 2-1/2 cups milk. Add dry mustard. Pour over the ingredients in the pan. Cover and refrigerate overnight. When you’re ready to bake it, combine the mushroom soup with the remaining half cup of milk and spread over the top.