(ARA) - There's something about the smell of freshly baked breakfast dishes on a weekend morning. It conjures warm memories of savoring food and conversation in the comfort of your pajamas.
This season, why not take a break from dinner parties and opt instead for a cozier morning meal? Whether gathering family on a quiet morning or preparing a livelier feast for friends, a no-fuss brunch menu gives everyone the opportunity to slow down and enjoy the occasion.
It's easy to stay focused on loved ones when you plan your menu around unfussy dishes that can be prepared in advance. This collection of baked egg recipes provides a delicious departure from the expected scrambled eggs or omelets by using liquid egg products to save prep time and add a nutritional boost to your meal.
Liquid egg substitutes are made from all-natural egg whites that have been fortified with essential vitamins and beta carotene, so they contain all of the best parts of the egg while eliminating cholesterol. Better yet, they can be purchased from your supermarket's dairy case in ready-to-pour containers that get you from the refrigerator to the table without the hassle of cracking shells or separating the yolks.
Some brands of liquid egg products, however, contain onion powder and other seasonings that will impact the flavor of your dish, so be sure to read the ingredients label and consider your recipe when purchasing.
Taking care of these simple do-aheads the night before will allow you to roll out of bed and get brunch together without breaking an egg or a sweat. Not only will the heavenly aroma of them baking in the oven provide a pleasant wake up call, the dishes are also designed to hold well on a buffet table.
Overnight Banana Streusel French Toast
3/4 pound French bread, sliced 3/4-inch thick (about 14 slices)
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) AllWhites 100 percent liquid egg whites
1 1/2 cups half and half
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 bananas, sliced
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup quick-cooking oats
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
Butter 13x9-inch glass baking dish. Place bread, cut side up, in single layer in bottom of dish. In medium bowl combine 2/3 cup brown sugar, AllWhites, half and half, cinnamon and vanilla; stir to mix well. Pour brown sugar mixture over bread. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 6 hours or overnight.
Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Place sliced bananas in single layer over bread. In small bowl combine brown sugar, oats and melted butter; mix well. Sprinkle streusel over bananas.
Bake, uncovered, 30 to 35 minutes or until bread is golden brown and crisp.
Tip: For an elegant presentation, dust with powdered sugar immediately before serving.
Italian Breakfast Strata
1 pound Italian sausage
5 cups French bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 medium zucchini, cut in half lengthwise, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 can (15 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained
16 ounces Better'n Eggs
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1-2 teaspoons cayenne pepper sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Cook Italian sausage in 10-inch skillet until browned; drain grease. Spray 13x9 inch glass baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Cover bottom of pan with cubed bread. Layer bread with cooked sausage, mushrooms, zucchini and diced tomatoes.
In medium bowl combine Better'n Eggs, milk, basil, pepper sauce and salt; mix well with wire whisk or fork. Pour mixture over vegetables. Sprinkle evenly with cheese. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 6 hours or overnight.
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Uncover strata. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until eggs are almost set in the center and edges are golden brown. Let stand 10 minutes; cut into 8 pieces.
For more delicious brunch and holiday recipes, including low-fat eggnog, visit www.betterneggs.com.
Courtesy of ARAcontent