Wednesday, May 20, 2009
I Should Win A Prize For This One
"Who thought up this recipe?" Kid asked.
"I did." I answered.
"No I mean... Did you invent it?" Kid clarified.
"Yep." I replied.
"Oh Mommy, you should have your own cooking show." Kid declared.
Mini Strata Muffins
Preheat oven to 375 (I used convection and if you have it you should too)
This recipe makes 16-18 individual muffins so get out your muffin tins accordingly. Non stick or silicone pans are important here as are using non stick muffin liners (either silicone or If You Care brand 100% Unbleached Large Baking Cups ... they are made of parchment paper which is non stick and you can get them at the regular grocery store). You will need to grease your tins BEFORE putting in your muffin liner... this is just for ease of clean up and you will thank me later. If you don't have non stick pans and you can't find these parchment paper liners than grease your pans really well and do not use a liner at all. Regular paper liners are not going to work for these and will stick to the muffins.
You can change this recipe up anyway you want. You can make them with anytype of cheese or filling or omit all the fillings for a plain egg in a nest type muffin.
For the eggs:
1/3 c milk
season with salt and pepper (seriously, don't skimp)
1/3 c shredded cheddar cheese
3 green onions thinly sliced
3 oz deli ham cut into small pieces
bread, one piece per muffin tin
butter (about 2-3 T)
For the muffins you will need one loaf of soft bread. A smaller (skinnier that is) loaf will be easiest to work with. I used Sara Lee Soft & Smooth 100% Whole Wheat.
Cut the crust off of 18 pieces of bread.* You should be left with a bread square.
Grease your muffin tins. Place your muffin liners in if using.
Butter the bottom of a piece of bread lightly (about 1/2 t butter).
Place in the muffin liner with the butter down. You will center the square over the liner and then push the bread in pressing it into the muffin tin. Once it's in the tin you will press it into the bottoms and sides thinning the bread out and getting rid of the air in the bread. You really can't go wrong just do it. You are turning it into a shell for your egg mixture.
Repeat with all your bread.
In the bread shell place your strata fixings.
We used diced ham, green onions, & cheddar.
You will only be able to put in about a teaspoon of each topping into your bread shells.
We used a few pieces of ham and a sprinkling of onion in each shell. We covered it with about 1/2 t of cheese and reserved a little cheese to sprinkle on top of each strata muffin before baking.
Now with some patience you are going to fill each bread shell with your egg mixture.
This all sounds complicated but it's not... I swear... it's just wordy!
The bread will soak up the egg so it is important to pour a little in at a time... let it soak up... then add a little more. If you fill it up to the top right away it will overflow and seep down the other side of your muffin liner. (If you are NOT using liners this step will be easier... just fill them up and once it soaks up top it off again). So I suggest you pour a small amount in each shell and then as it soaks up (almost immediately) go back through and top them off. Repeat until your egg mixture is gone. Top each with a little more cheese and bake.
These muffins took 20 minutes to set and cook through.
After about 7 minutes I loosely (really just place on top) a sheet of aluminum foil to keep the bread shell edges from burning. You will just need to check your muffins and when they are golden brown put some foil on top. Continue cooking until the centers are firm.
Take the strata muffins out of the muffin tins and cool on a wire rack.
Once cool you can freeze these! I placed my cooling rack in the freezer for a couple hours and then popped them all into a freezer bag. For best reheating results just pop your mornings muffins into the fridge before bed. Reheat in the microwave in 30 second intervals until heated through.
150 calories each
*go ahead and save all those crust in a freezer bag for bread crumbs (or if you're me bread pudding).