Breakfast casseroles are a perfect Sunday brunch idea or even a weekday treat. They are filling, easy to make and feed a crowd too. Here you will find three different recipes for the breakfast favorite below.

Ignacio Lopez
Executive Chef, Beat Hôtel
13 Brattle St.
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 499-0001
www.beathotel.com

With over 15 years of experience, Chef Lopez has worked at well-known, award-winning national eateries where he developed a love for “market to table” cooking. His style of cooking is to prepare seasonal local foods simply, to let the natural flavors stand out, and he brought his perspective to American restaurant and bar the Beat Hôtel in Harvard Square. A perfect chef to share breakfast recipes, the restaurant offers jazz brunch and other weekly events and dining options. Be sure to check out three recipes he has shared below.

Desayuno Mexicano (Mexican Breakfast Casserole)

Ingredients:

  • 8 each corn tortillas 
  • 4 cups, well drained cooked black beans 
  • 4 cups cooked white rice
  • 2 cups, drained and washed cooked hominy 
  • 4 cups, heated salsa verde 
  • 4 each roasted poblano peppers, peeled and de-seeded, cut into strips
  • 4 oz Queso Oaxaca (can use a good mozzarella)
  • 8 each fresh eggs 
  • 2 oz Adobo
  • 3 oz Crema Fresca (you can use thinned-out sour cream with a touch of lime juice)
  • 1 cup tomato petals, diced 
  • 1/4 bunch cilantro sprigs
  • 4 each, roasted jalapeños
  • 1/2; cup canola oil 

Directions

  1. Using a large saute pan, set at medium heat, lightly fry both sides of the corn tortillas with some canola oil until slightly crispy. Place tortillas on a plate lined with a paper towel and season with some salt. For a lighter version of this dish, the tortillas can just be lightly toasted in a pan.
  2. Drain and rinse the hominy under cold water
  3. Heat salsa verde with hominy, sauce should just coat the back of a spoon (if too thick, thin slightly with some vegetable stock or water).
  4. Lightly coat the bottom of the casserole dish with some of the salsa verde, then place a single layer of the tortillas. Follow with a layer of black beans, rice, poblanos and some of the Queso Oaxaca. Repeat the process to make one more layer, finishing with the Queso Oaxaca. Place in oven at 350 degrees F until warm in the center.
  5. To serve, crack nine fresh eggs evenly on top, season and place back in the oven for 15 minutes or until eggs are cooked soft.
  6. Garnish with a thin drizzle of adobo, crema fresca, grated queso fresco, tomatoes and chopped cilantro.
  7. Cut with a serated knife, serve and enjoy.
  8. Serve roasted jalapenos on the side.

*This dish is best served if using home-cooked components, but most may be bought canned.

Italian Influenced Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups creamy polenta (see recipe)
  • 2 tbsp shallots, minced 
  • 2 each garlic, sliced thin
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 
  • 6 cups whole milk
  • 1.5 cups ground corn meal
  • 2 each thyme sprig 
  • 1 cup Fontina, grated 
  • 2 oz sweet butter 
  • 4 each ripe plum tomatoes, cores removed 
  • 2 sprigs oregano, fresh, chopped
  • 1 bunch asparagus, bottoms trimmed
  • 2 cups pomodoro
  • Parmesano, shaved with a peeler
  • Parsley, Italian flat leaf
  • one pinch crushed red peppers 
  • Salt

Roasted Tomatoes:

  1. Set oven at 400 degrees F. Cut tomatoes in half, toss with some olive oil, salt and pepper, chopped thyme and fresh oregano. Place a roasting rack on a sheet pan and place tomatoes cut side up on rack.
  2. Roast tomatoes until slightly browned. Remove from oven and set aside.

Polenta:

  1. Sweat shallots and garlic slowly with olive oil and some salt in a two-quart sauce pot until fragrant.
  2. Add milk and thyme, bring to a simmer and season to taste. Add ground cornmeal in a slow and steady stream while whisking, keep mixing until thoroughly incorporated. Mix in butter and fontina and pour into a casserole dish. If time permits, set polenta in a Bain Marie cover with parchment paper and leave in a low oven for an hour (this will ensure that polenta is smooth and not grainy).

Directions:

  1. In a metal bowl, toss asparagus with some olive oil, salt and pepper and arrange atop polenta, Make 8 wells in polenta, crack an egg in each one and season with salt and pepper. Bake at 300 degrees F until eggs are cooked soft. Garnish with roasted tomatoes, parsley, parmesan and crushed red peppers.
  2. To serve; spoon some pomodoro in the center of the plate and scoop out polenta with eggs. Enjoy.

Related: Best Places For All-Day Breakfast In Boston

Great American Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and large diced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Thyme, fresh, picked and chopped
  • 1/2 lb applewood bacon, thick sliced, cut into lardons
  • 3 each shallots, peeled, julienne
  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts, sliced thick
  • 2 tbsp sherry vinegar or lemon juice 
  • Aged cheddar cream 
  • 2 oz sweet butter 
  • 1/4 cup white onion, small dice
  • 2 each garlic, minced
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups heavy cream 
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 4 oz aged cheddar, grated
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • Eggs
  • Chopped chives

Aged Cheddar Cream:

  1. Sweat onion and garlic with butter in a small sauce pot. Season lightly with salt and pepper and deglaze with white wine, reduce by half. While wine is reducing, toss grated cheddar with flour in a bowl and mix well to coat.
  2. Once wine is reduced, add heavy cream and bring to a simmer.
  3. Remove from pot, let cool slightly and place in a blender with cheese and flour mixture. Be careful to pulse or start blender slowly (hot hot). If too thick, add some milk to thin out. Sauce should be the consistency of thick gravy.
  4. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Directions:

  1. Set oven at 400 degrees F. Boil sweet potatoes in salted water for 3 minutes, strain and toss with some olive oil, thyme, salt and pepper. Roast until slightly brown and then set aside.
  2. Set a large sautee pan at medium heat and cook bacon until just slightly crispy, then add shallots, cook for another minute until they are slightly caramelized.
  3. Add Brussels sprouts, season with some salt and fresh cracked black pepper and saute for another two minutes, then add sherry vinegar or lemon juice.
  4. Add cherry tomatoes, roasted sweet potatoes and mix in bechamel.
  5. Place all ingredients in casserole dish.
  6. Crack 8 eggs on top of mixture and bake until eggs are cooked soft.
  7. Garnish with chopped chives.

Related: Boston’s Best Family-Friendly Breakfast & Brunch Spots

Michelle Levine is a creative energetic, young professional that is passionate about everything Boston has to offer. She loves to attend local events, dine out, and cook and wants to share her findings with you. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.

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