When I started this blog, I was pigeon-holed as a pizza recipe man. Now, I'm in danger of becoming Mr. Bread Pudding. In an effort to downplay it, I'm simply referring to this as a "casserole", because that's what it essentially is.
The bottom line is, no matter what the grocery bill is, these dishes make A LOT of portions and will feed you for a fucking WHILE. And it's the kind of dish that tastes better the day after. (And the day after, etc.) And I've been so awfully broke as of late...
Consider this one as the template recipe. All my recipes are modifications on recipes that I find; here, I encourage you to experiment.
2 packages of frozen, chopped spinach, well-drained
1 lb of mushrooms (any kind), chopped
2 yellow onions, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 cups fake eggs (or equivalent of 6 eggs)
1 quart milk
1-2 huge loaves of good crusty bread (whole wheat/grain), torn up
1 cup parmesan
any seasonings you like
shredded cheeses are good; whatever you like
vegetables you like (chopped broccoli?)
meats or fake meats, chopped
instead of 1 loaf of bread, you could combine a bunch of different bits of old bread
In a large pan, over a low heat, sauté chopped onions in a bit of olive oil until nicely carmelized. Add garlic, mushrooms, drained/thawed spinach and any seasonings. Add meat/fake meat any veggies. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a very large bowl, combine eggs, milk. Whisk well.
Add your slightly-cooled sauté mixture, stirring. Start added your torn pieces of bread, folding them in as you go. Eventually, you'll need to use your hands to really get in there.
Add all your cheeses. Incorporate well, with your hands.
Depending on how much stuff you've got in there, you may need to let it soak up a bit. It oughtn't be too soupy. If it is and you don't think it'll all get soaked up by the bread, you might want to add some more bread. If your bread's particularly dry/crusty, you may want to let it soak a little longer.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F, and grease a large baking dish (or several) with olive oil. Scoop your bread pudding concoction evenly to the pans. Sprinkle with any remaining cheese, drizzle with a little olive oil. Bake until firm in the center and golden brown -- "about 1 hour". Serve warm.
To reheat: heat up a pan and add a little olive oil. Scoop a portion of the casserole into the pan and sauté, breaking it up with your spatula. Let it brown a bit. Scoop onto a plate and go bonkers.
OK, since this pretty much covers anything you can do with this recipe, I shall retire my "casserole" line unless I come up with something that changes the rules.