A strata is a like a savoury bread pudding. You make it a day ahead, leave it in the fridge overnight and just pop it in the oven to bake for breakfast or brunch.
Ready time: 1 hour and 5 minutes to 1 hour and 10 minutes
2 cups milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
fresh ground pepper
½ teaspoon paprika
8 pieces thick white bread (trim crusts if you desire)
3 to 4 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup, frozen chopped spinach, thawed and water squeezed out
1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon, about 6 to 7 pieces
2 cups grated Emmantal or Gruyere cheese
Whisk together eggs, milk, salt, pepper and paprika in a small bowl. Set aside.
Grease a 9 x 9 (8X8 will also work) baking dish.
Spread Dijon mustard on the bread slices
Lay four slices of the white bread (mustard side up) in the bottom of the dish (you may have to trim them).
Sprinkle with half the bacon, half the cheese and all the spinach.
Add the next layer of bread.
Pour the egg mixture over the strata soaking all the bread as well as possible. Use a small knife to pierce the top of the strata to help egg mixture soak in. Press down in corners to help soak up liquid.
Cover with remaining bacon and cheese.
Cover and put into the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Bake uncovered for 45 to 50 minutes or until golden and a knife comes out clean.