Great recipe for Cheese Spinach Strata – while listening to the finale of Swan Lake – and cooking with kids

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I love eating bread and cheese – and here is a favorite recipe for both – in a STRATA – so easy to make – not low calorie certainly – and something that the children love to help me make – and to eat too! Except Jonah who does not like cheese. Sigh. Of course everything tastes better with music – try Swan Lake this time! Cooking with kids listening to great muisc and even watching ballet – what a treat!. This is the finale – so if you wish you can see both the ballet and enjoy the music. Amazingly inspirational.

It only takes half hour to make but has to be chilled overnight – or even longer. So for working moms and grandmas its perfect – make it on Thursday evening – put it into the fridge and cook it on Sunday morning.

Ingredients:

1 (10-oz) package frozen spinach, thawed
1 1/2 cups finely chopped onion (1 large)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
8 cups cubed (1 inch) French or Italian bread (1/2 lb)
6 oz coarsely grated Gruyère (2 cups)
2 oz finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (1 cup)
2 3/4 cups milk
9 large eggs
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

Directions:

  1. Squeeze handfuls of spinach to remove as much liquid as possible, then finely chop.
  2. Cook onion in butter in a large heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and nutmeg and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Stir in spinach, then remove from heat.
  3. Spread one third of bread cubes in a buttered 3-quart gratin dish or other shallow ceramic baking dish and top evenly with one third of spinach mixture. Sprinkle with one third of each cheese. Repeat layering twice (ending with cheeses).
  4. Whisk together milk, eggs, mustard, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl and pour evenly over strata. Chill strata, covered with plastic wrap, at least 8 hours (for bread to absorb custard).
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F. Let strata stand at room temperature 30 minutes.
  6. Bake strata, uncovered, in middle of oven until puffed, golden brown, and cooked through, 45 to 55 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
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About Grandma

I have reinvented myself many times during my life -teacher, lawyer, business woman, CEO, Entrepreneur, Board member, Professor, Mom, Wife, Farmer, Chef, Musician, Author and now my best role of all - Grandma to multiple grandchildren, grandnephews and nieces worldwide.
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