Savory Brunch Strata

A little entertaining is good for the soul, don’t you think?  
Last weekend I co-hosted a brunch and we made a delicious, half gone before I could get a good picture of the finished product, strata!  You may have already caught on to how much I like breakfast casseroles from this post.  Seriously, anything that can be made the night before and popped into the oven in the morning, is my kind of dish! And this savory strata was a winner for me and our guests! 
** Note: This needs to be prepared the night before you plan to serve it.
1. Use a super sharp knife to cute the bread into little 1 in. by 1 in squares.  If your knife isn’t super sharp, your bread will be super squished.
2. Use the butter to grease the bottom and sides of a glass 9 x 13 inch casserole dish (we had enough to cover a large and a small casserole dish).  Then line the whole dish with the bread.  make sure you put the crust side down, because you want the bread to soak up everything else that will be going on top of it.  
3. Top with half the cheese, all the tomatoes, the broccoli and parsley.
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mil, salt and pepper.  You’ll know you’re done whisking when everything is combined and the mixture gets a little frothy.
5. Pour the mixture over the bread, making sure to evenly soak everything.  
6. Add dollops of ricotta on top (see picture below for our mad dolloping skills).
7. Sprinkle strata with remaining cheese and herbs de provence.  Never heard of herbs de provence?  I hadn’t either.  Basically it’s an herb blend that goes great with eggs.  Try it with your next omelet!
8. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
9. In the morning remove the strata from the fridge and let it sit out for about an hour to let it get to room temperature. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 375.
10. You are going to bake the strata for 45 mins. to 1 hour.  Just keep an eye on it and when it’s puffy and golden , you’ll know it’s done.  
11. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes and serve!

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