The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
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Ham and Cheese Strata

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Level: Easy

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Description

Whether you’re hosting a brunch with friends or just want to whip up something special for family breakfast this weekend, my Ham and Cheese Strata is just the dish you need in your repertoire.

Ingredients

  • 13 ounces, weight Sourdough Bread, Crust Removed, Cut Into 1 ½ Inch Cubes (about 7 Cups)
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Medium Leek, Cut Into Thin Half Moons
  • 2-½ cups Whole Milk
  • 8 whole Large Eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt (Less If Using Finer Table Salt), Plus More As Needed
  • ½ teaspoons Freshly Ground Cracked Pepper
  • 8 ounces, weight Bayonne Ham, Cut Into ½ To ¾ Inch Squares
  • 8 ounces, weight Sharp, Aged White Cheddar Or Provolone Cheese, Grated
  • 2 Tablespoons Chives, Thinly Sliced For Garnish

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°F.

If desired, cut bread into cubes at least 1 to 2 days before baking strata. Spread out on a sheet tray, uncovered, and allow to dry out. Alternatively, place bread cubes on sheet tray the day of baking and dry out in preheated oven for approximately 10–12 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Warm a 10-inch cast iron pan or nonstick pan over medium heat. Melt butter. Add leeks. Season with salt. Allow to cook without developing color, adjusting heat as needed, for 5–8 minutes or until softened and translucent. Remove from pan.

In a large bowl, whisk milk, eggs, mustard, salt and pepper.

Place half the bread on the bottom of the pan used to cook the leeks. Layer on half of the leeks, followed by half of the ham and cheese. Repeat layers with remaining bread, leeks and ham. Pour over egg mixture. Push down bread to completely saturate with egg mixture. Top with remaining cheese.

Bake in preheated oven, uncovered, for 60–80 minutes or until knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool slightly. Garnish with chives, slice and serve.

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