Mushroom, Bacon and Cheese Strata
1 loaf ciabatta bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 7 cups)
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, chopped
8 - 10 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
6 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
3 cups non-fat milk
6 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread bread cubes onto a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until lightly toasted. Place cubes in a large bowl.
Melt butter in a large skillet and saute mushrooms and onion for 10 minutes or until all the liquid evaporates and the vegetables are tender. Add mixture to the bread and toss to combine thoroughly. Arrange 1/2 of the bread mixture in a greased 11 3/4" by 7 1/2" Pyrex dish. Top with half the cheese and half the bacon. Repeat layers.
Combine the milk, eggs, thyme, salt and pepper and stir with a whisk to combine. Pour milk mixture over the bread, cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove strata from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Bake the strata, covered at 350 degrees F. for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes or until set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8 - 10.