I usually like to test out a new recipe on my own family before I venture to make it for a larger audience. Thanks to an opportunity I was given through the Macy’s Culinary Council, I now have the perfect dish to share on Thanksgiving morning, Black Friday (aka how to use up the extra ham or turkey and fuel up for a day of shopping) or the next pot-luck dinner we go to.
In celebration of 85 years of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Macy’s Culinary Council has teamed up with some of the most renowned chefs of our time to create a one of a kind Holiday Cookbook. Recipes in the book range from the very traditional – mashed potatoes to the newer culinary styles of Ming Tsai and Wolfgang Puck to recipes for Hannukah and even New Year’s. The cookbook is $24.99 and can be purchased at Macy’s stores or online at Macys.com.
I have long been a fan of Emeril Lagasse and happen to have a thing for comfort-food, like yummy casseroles, so I just had to try the Broccoli, Ham and Cheese Breakfast Casserole on page 49. If it turns out good (you’ll have to keep reading to find out) then I am going to bring it to our family Thanksgiving Day celebration so we can enjoy it while we watch the parade.
Everything in this recipe is fresh and for the most part healthy. I realized after I had taken this picture that the recipe calls for 8 eggs not 3 but by then there was no way to re-take this photo – I was in too deep!
Breakfast Casserole with Broccoli, Ham and Cheese
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, plus more to season
- 6 cups broccoli florets (from about 2 pounds broccoli heads)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1?2 cups finely chopped onions
- 1 1/4 cups (about 8 ounces) finely chopped ham
- 3 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
- 8 cups cubed crusty bread such as French or Italian (1-inch cubes)
- 8 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 cups half-and-half
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives or scallions (white and tender green parts)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons sweet paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
To assemble the casserole:
Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with nonstickspray. Fill a large pot three-fourths full of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, prepare an ice bath. Season the water with salt, add the broccoli florets, and blanch until bright green and barely tender, about 1 minute. Using a skimmer, transfer the broccoli to the ice bath to halt the cooking. When the broccoli is fully chilled, drain well, pat dry with paper towels, and set aside.
In a small saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and a couple of pinches of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft, about 4 minutes.Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, combine the broccoli, cooled onions, ham, Cheddar cheese, and bread cubes. Toss gently to combine, then transfer to the prepared baking dish, spreading the mixture in an even layer.
Using the same bowl, whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, chives, 11/4 teaspoons salt, paprika, and cayenne pepper until thoroughly mixed. Pour over the broccoli mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or up to overnight. About30 minutes before baking, remove the casserole from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature.
To bake the casserole:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Remove the plastic wrap from the baking dish and cover the dish with aluminum foil. Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and sprinkle the Parmesan cheese evenly over the top. Return the casserole, uncovered, to the oven and continue baking until the top is golden brown and puffed and the casserole is cooked through when tested with a knife, about 15 minutes longer.
Transfer the casserole to a rack and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Cut into squares to serve.
Recipe compliments of Emeril Lagasse.
- This is best prepared the night before and I ended up having to cook the casserole for 60 minutes covered, then 30 minutes uncovered.
- When they say a large bowl, they are not joking! All those ingredients take up a lot of space and in order to have the room to mix the ingredients thoroughly, you need a BIG bowl.
- Your 9×13 pan will be FULL when you place the first batch of ingredients into it.
- You could easily substitute leftover turkey for the ham or add a bit of crumbled bacon for extra flavor.
I will definitely make this again! I absolutely loved it and my 15 year old son must have, too, because he came back for seconds. Of course, I could not get my older daughter to try it because she doesn’t tolerate large amounts of cheese and dairy well, and my younger daughter ate it but picked out the ham. My husband thought it was good, but for some reason, broccoli just doesn’t say “breakfast” to him. He suggested swapping the broccoli for potato and adding some sausage or bacon to the mix.
You can get the printable version of this recipe along with others from the book at the Macy’s website. Enjoy!!
Disclosure: I wrote this post on behalf of the Macy’s Culinary Council and have been compensated for my time and materials, however, all opinions are my own.