Spicy Strata

Recipe courtesy Aida Mollenkamp
TOTAL TIME: 13 hr 10 min
Prep: 10 min
Inactive Prep: 12 hr
Cook: 1 hr
 
YIELD: 4 to 6 servings
LEVEL: Easy

ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 6 medium scallions, ends trimmed and thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
  • 8 ounces asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 pound loaf ciabatta or French bread, sliced 3/4-inch thick
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Jack cheese (about 4 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup pickled jalapenos, rinsed and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish
  • Sour cream, for garnish
  • Avocado, for garnish
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Directions

Butter 8-by-8-inch baking dish and set aside. Heat butter over medium heat. When it foams, add scallions, and cook until just softened, about 1 minute. Add asparagus and cook until bright green and beginning to soften, about 2 minutes; remove from heat.

Whisk eggs, half-and-half, salt, cumin, and pepper in a large bowl until evenly combined. Arrange half of the bread in bottom of prepared dish. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the cheese and half each of jalapenos, cilantro, and asparagus mixture. Pour over half of egg mixture. Repeat layering with remaining bread, another 1/2 cup of the cheese, and remaining chilies, cilantro and asparagus mixture. Pour remaining egg mixture over top.

Sprinkle strata with another 1/4 cup of the cheese and push to ensure bread is submerged in egg custard. Cover with plastic wrap, put a plate and a 1-pound weight on top (a large can of tomatoes or rice in a re-sealable plastic bag works well), place in refrigerator for 1 to 12 hours.

When ready to bake, heat oven to 325 degrees F and arrange rack in the middle. Let strata sit at room temperature while oven heats, at least 20 minutes.

Sprinkle strata with remaining 1/4 cup of the cheese and bake until puffed and edges pull away slightly, about 40 to 45 minutes. Cool for at least 5 minutes before serving. Serve with some cilantro, sour cream, and avocado, as desired.

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