Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Brunch

This past weekend my friends and I had a cozy Easter brunch at my apartment following mass at our schools basilica. We had way too many food for the eight or so of us (case in point: my friend who was in charge of the ham also brought over 48 dinner rolls...), but it was a lot of fun celebrating our last holiday potluck!

I used my crockpot to try making a casserole for the first time and went with this hashbrown-sausage-egg-cheese layered monster. It's a LOT of food but it was perfect for brunch.
I used precooked apple and gouda chicken sausage and frozen hash browns so besides chopping up the veggies the work involved was minimal. I cooked this on high without any problems. I'd definitely recommend this for any breakfast gathering you find yourself attending.

Ingredients
12 eggs
3/4 cup half and half
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 cups cheese (I used a monterey jack and colby mix)
1/2 cup yellow onions, chopped
20 ounces hash browns, shredded
1 pound sausage, cooked
1/2 cup bell pepper, chopped
2 tablespoons spice mix (parsley flakes, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme)
Chives, to garnish

Directions 
  1. Spray the sides and bottom of the crockpot with cooking spray.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat eggs, half-and-half, pepper flakes, salt and pepper with whisk. Reserve 3/4 cup cheese and 2 tablespoons yellow onions; set aside. In small bowl, stir together remaining cheeses.
  3. Layer half of the potatoes, sausage, peppers, remaining onions, cheese, and spices in slow cooker. Repeat layers. Pour egg mixture over layers.
  4. Cover; cook on low for 4 to 5 hours or high for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until temperature reaches 160°F in center and egg mixture is set.
  5. Sprinkle reserved cheese and green onions over top of casserole. Cover; cook 10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.

*Note: the two layers of hash browns combined with eggs results in a very carb heavy end product. If I were making this again, I would recommend nixing one of the layers of hash browns in lieu of greens (like spinach or kale) to cut the density of the carbs and produce a slightly lighter but still substantial and filling meal!


Recipe source: Betty Crocker

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