February 12, 2010, 11:53 pm
Filed under: Breakfast, Food and Recipes | Tags: , , , ,

Mornings are my favorite part of the day: the part where the house is quiet, the smell of coffee is in the air, and with any luck, the smell of breakfast cooking is present, too. I don’t have a chance to enjoy this every morning, with having to get up before the sunrise on work days; but, that seems to make the mornings that I am able to cook breakfast even more to be savored. I love getting out of bed, padding into the kitchen, brewing coffee, and immediately cooking a breakfast. It’s how I best wake up; I’m at my best at that point.

So, what better way, after two crazy days at work, to start my day off than breakfast casserole? This recipe originally came from a family friend, and my in-laws had this dish on the morning of my wedding, at a breakfast that this particular friend hosted. That’s how I came into possession of this recipe. It’s truly southern, with grits, cheese, and sausage. I like to throw in a little cinnamon and crushed red pepper with my sausage and green onion with the egg base to give it my own personal kick, but you could totally leave that part out if you desire. I also traditionally halve this recipe when I’m making it around the house for just me and my husband. But, if family is in town, I serve the whole recipe.

This has become a recipe that my whole family enjoys (even the non grit lovers); and I hope you enjoy it too.

Breakfast Casserole

1 lb bulk pork sausage
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
3 cups hot cooked grits
2 1/2 cups sharp shredded cheddar cheese, with a little extra for topping the casserole
4 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups milk (or fat free half and half for a little richer dish)
4 tbsp butter
4 sliced green onions
Salt and fresh ground pepper

1. Preheat oven to 350. Cook sausage, cinnamon, and red pepper flakes until browned. Drain well with a paper towel.

2. Spoon sausage into a lightly greased 9 x 13 inch baking dish (if halving the recipe, use a glass pie pan or an 8 x 8 dish). Combine hot grits (follow package instructions for cooking the grits), cheese, and butter. Stir until butter and cheese melts.

3. In a seperate bowl, whisk eggs, milk, and green onions until well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir egg mixture into grit mixture. Pour over the sausage in your baking dish. Top with desired amount of cheese (you can leave this out, the original recipe does not call for this step, but I like a little extra cheese).

4. Bake at 350 for one hour, until eggs are puffed and slightly browned on top.


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