While I was gathering frozen items to take along on our March trailer trip, I grabbed a package of this breakfast casserole along with the other items I needed. I always start our journeys with a full freezer including several kinds of meat, extra butter (never leave home without it), ice cream (for Mr. C), a small amount of ice (for our first nights “safe arrival” drink), and anything else that I think might provide meal variety and preparation ease along the road.
In addition to the usual items, this year I included frozen broccoli cheese soup, cinnamon rolls, a pasta casserole, and a vacuum packed 2 person portion of this breakfast casserole.
When we are out in our trailer, I almost always fix breakfast. This trip however, we ate out for breakfast one morning mainly for nostalgic reasons. We used to own a condo in Long Beach, Washington, so we just had to eat at least one meal at our favorite restaurant in the area (42nd Street Café and Bistro) while we were “camped” for one night at Cape Disappointment State Park. (I say “camped”, but in reality, calling a fully equipped trailer parked at a state park or RV park “camping” is nigh onto ludicrous. A walk around queen sized bed, full bathroom, three burner stove plus oven, refrigerator/freezer, microwave, furnace, air conditioner, TV, radio, etc. is about as far from real camping (sleeping in a tent, cooking over a fire or camp stove, keeping your perishables in a cooler, etc.) as spending a night in a youth hostel compared to a 5 star hotel! Actually, even further apart. At least spending the night in a youth hostel, you don’t have to leave your warm bed and run through a torrential downpour to reach a bathroom in the middle of the night!) But I digress……………….. And no, I don’t feel guilty in the least. I did my share of tent camping when I was younger and loved every minute of it. But at a certain age, even the most avid tent camper must pay attention to Mother Nature when she starts sending out not-so-subtle hints that it might be time to make a change. (The onset of regular night calls and tender knees, to mention a couple of the hints both Mr. C and I received from Her Grace.)
For a few pictures of our “camping” experience, see pictures below.
Anyway, what I am trying to get at, in my own easily distracted way, is that for one of our breakfasts, it was a delight to open our trailer freezer, pull out the package containing this casserole, heat it up in the microwave, (yes I know I’m spoiled) and have a tasty bit of variety from our normal breakfast meat and eggs over easy.
I guess I should really get back to the subject at hand and mention that this casserole is very easy to prepare, fairly economical, and just plain delicious. And if you haven’t already gathered that it freezes beautifully, let me take this opportunity to make that fact known to you as well.
So do yourself and your family a favor. Make up a double batch of this breakfast casserole. Serve one batch and save the other in your freezer. Then some morning when even the thought of getting out of bed, much less cooking breakfast is repugnant, whip your frozen casserole out of the freezer, and treat yourself to a fabulous breakfast with virtually no preparation involved. OK, you do have to work the buttons on your microwave. But that’s where a hot, steaming cup of coffee really helps! Good morning sunshine! Breakfast’s ready.
- 1 T. unsalted butter
- ¼ lb. button mushrooms, sliced
- 1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
- 2 c. half & half
- ¼ tsp. dry mustard
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 T. dried parsley
- 4 eggs
- 1 c. grated sharp cheddar cheese
- 6 slices cubed white bread
Melt butter in medium fry pan. Brown mushrooms in butter and remove from pan. Add sausage and cook until starting to brown. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.
Pour a tiny bit of the half & half in a large bowl. Add the dry mustard and whisk until smooth. (If you add the mustard to all the liquid, you will have the very devil of a time breaking up the small dried mustard clumps. Trust me on this one!) When smooth add the remaining half & half, salt, pepper, parsley, and eggs. Whisk until the eggs are well combined. Stir in the cheese, bread, cooked mushrooms, and sausage.
Pour into a lightly buttered casserole or 9×13-inch pan, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. Remove from refrigerator about an hour before you plan to bake the casserole.
Bake uncovered in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 40-50 minutes or until firm to the touch and lightly browned. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Freezes beautifully.
Our trailer parked at Morro Bay State Park. Picture taken from the golf course.
Another picture taken from the golf course. (Man taking his golf clubs for a stroll – Mr. C.)
Rough life at Jalama Beach (Santa Barbara county park).
Any closer to the Columbia River while parked at Peach Beach RV Park across the river from Biggs, Oregon and we would have been IN the river! Pretty darn wonderful!