Friday, 22 February 2013

Caramelised Onion, Spinach and Gruyere Cheese Strata with Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes


Dinner for breakfast or breakfast for dinner. Happy Smiley.

Caramelised Onion, Spinach and Gruyere Cheese Strata with Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes
from Cooking Channel 
Serves 8

For the Strata:
6 cups cubed day-old  bread, with crust
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 large salad onions, halved and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon sugar
Sea salt  flakes and freshly ground black pepper
250 frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
10 eggs
2 cups grated aged gruyere cheese
3 cups full-cream milk
1 cup cream
2 teaspoons  Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

For the Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes:
3 tablespoons canola oil
500g cherry tomatoes, quartered
Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons finely sliced fresh chives, plus more for garnish

Make the Strata:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

Put the bread on a baking tray and toast until lightly golden brown on both sides, about 10 minutes. Remove and let cool.

Combine the butter and oil in a large saute pan over medium heat and cook until it begins to shimmer. Add the onions, toss to coat in the butter, and then add the sugar and season with salt and pepper. Cook the onions, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and caramelized, about 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.

In a large bowl, combine the bread cubes, onions and spinach. In another large bowl, whisk together the eggs, 1 1/2 cups cheese, milk, cream, mustard, 1 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, thyme and nutmeg.

Butter a 22 x 33cm baking dish. Add the bread cubes to the baking dish, and then pour the egg mixture over the bread cubes and press down to make sure the bread is totally submerged.

Bake the strata uncovered until the mixture has puffed up slightly, is golden brown on top and doesn't shimmy with uncooked  custard when you shake the pan, about 1 hour. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup cheese over the top during the last 10 minutes of baking. Let cool 5 minutes before serving.

Makes the Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes:
Heat oil in a large saute pan over high heat until it begins to shimmer. Add the tomatoes, season with salt and pepper and cook until the tomatoes softened. Add the chives and remove from the heat.

Serve large spoonfuls of the strata onto plates and top with  sauteed tomatoes.


  1. Happy smile you say? HELL YEAH! This dish is just mouth-watering. I love everything in it + it is full of veggies and cheese. Yum :)

  2. The title with all of those amazing ingredients is making me hungry already. This sounds incredible, and your pictures are so gorgeous of all the great COLORS!

  3. Looks delicious! Would love this for breakfast.....or dinner:)

  4. Hey Gabrielle. This is an example of what I do when the 6 fresh paninis I bought don't get eaten on the day.

  5. Thanks Little Kitchie. It's an appealing cast of characters, isn't it?

  6. Thanks Sara. How about first for breakfast and leftovers for dinner? Now there's an idea.