• The title of this popular breakfast casserole is a misnomer on two counts: It is neither an omelet nor does it require 24 hours to prepare. Instead, it’s a simple strata that takes just minutes to whip together. It can, however, sit in the refrigerator for 24 hours or even 36, making it a perfect dish to prepare ahead of time. Here’s what we discovered: shopping list
  • Test Kitchen Discoveries shopping list
  • Layer the bread and cheese into the buttered baking dish to ensure even distribution. shopping list
  • Use dense white bread for the best texture and flavor. shopping list
  • Add grated onion to the eggs for a sharp onion flavor without any cooking. shopping list
  • season the custard liberally. Without a liberal amount of salt, pepper, dry mustard, and Tabasco, the “omelet” tastes bland. shopping list
  • chipotle chiles are smoked jalapeños. They are available dried or rehydrated and canned in a spicy tomato sauce; we prefer the latter. A little goes a long way, but stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, they last indefinitely. shopping list

How to make it

  • We prefer the flavor and texture of Pepperidge Farm Hearty White Bread, although any firm white sandwich bread will do.
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter , softened, plus extra for greasing the dish
  • 10 slices high-quality white sandwich bread (see note above)
  • 3 cups shredded pepper Jack cheese
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 chipotle chile , minced
  • 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
  • 1 onion , grated
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9 by 13-inch baking dish (or casserole dish of similar size) with butter. Spread the remaining 3 tablespoons butter over one side of each slice of bread, then cut the bread into 1-inch pieces. Scatter half of the bread evenly into the prepared dish and sprinkle with half of the Pepper Jack. Repeat with the remaining bread and Pepper Jack. Whisk together the eggs, chile, adobo sauce, onion, salt, pepper, mustard, and Tabasco and pour evenly over the bread. Press lightly on the bread to submerge. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.
  • 2. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the dish from the refrigerator and uncover. Sprinkle top with cilantro before baking. Bake until puffed and golden brown, about 1 hour. Serve immediately.
  • To Make Ahead
  • The 24-Hour Omelet and any of its variations can be made and held in the refrigerator, wrapped tightly with plastic wrap, for up to 36 hours before baking.

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