When it comes to recipes, I have never been a big fan of the ones from Sandra Lee, the Food Network cook and author of many cookbooks. I find her "semi-homemade" concept of 70% processed and only 30% fresh ingredients rather alarming, as I believe that processed foods are one of the main causes for many of our nation's current health issues. However, I recently watched an episode of her show "Sandra's Money Saving Meals" which focused on egg dishes, and found myself actually liking the recipes she presented! One that I want to try is the Savory Bread Pudding with Sausage and Mushrooms. Baked as individual servings in a muffin tin, these tasty-looking treats would be perfect for breakfast, brunch, or lunch, and the recipe makes enough to serve 12 average or 6 hearty appetites. I am going to be making this egg dish soon!
Savory Bread Pudding with Sausage and Mushrooms
2 C. milk
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 of a day-old baguette, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 T. oil
1 package (8 oz.) sliced white mushrooms
8 oz. bulk sweet Italian sausage
Whisk together the first five ingredients in a large bowl. Add the cubed bread and let sit for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator so that the bread can absorb the liquid. Heat the oil over medium heat and sauté the mushrooms until softened. Add the sausage and cook, stirring, until the meat is browned and cooked through. Add the sausage mixture to the egg mixture and stir to combine. Ladle the batter into a greased 12-cup muffin tin, dividing it evenly among the individual cups. Bake at 325 degrees for 30-35 minutes until set. Remove the puddings from the muffin tin to a serving platter and serve. Makes 12 individual puddings.
Update: I finally got to make these and I think they need a bit more flavor, so next time I will use hot Italian sausage instead of the sweet variety. (They are actually tastier reheated and served the next day.) I used Italian bread instead of a baguette because that is what I had, and I did not need the oil for cooking the mushrooms, as I cooked the sausage first and got enough fat from the meat to use for the mushrooms.
If I make these again and feel they still need more flavor, I may try the Apple Mustard Sauce recommended for the leftovers in a second recipe called the "Round 2 Recipe", although I'm not sure I want to fry these in even more egg batter as suggested! (For the sauce, simply stir together 1/4 C. applesauce, 2 T. sour cream, and 3 T. brown mustard.)