Pizza Strata

Pizza is a pretty good way to use up some bits and pieces of this and that, and a strata is even better. One of your bits and pieces can be some fairly stale bread. You will need to be well-supplied with the cheese, eggs, and milk. This is also much easier than making a pizza from scratch. 
When I say mixed pizza toppings, I mean whatever vegetables you like to have on a pizza – for me that’s onions, peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, and green ones, too, when they are in season, which alas, they are not. But also things like the olives and anchovies, and the last of the deli meat, bacon, or pepperettes, the bottom of the jar of pesto, and so forth. If it’s something you like on pizza, and you have it, put some in.
4 to 6 servings1 hour 30 minutes – 30 minutes prep time
Pizza Strata with Salads
Soak the Bread:8 cups diced stale bread cubes6 large eggs1 1/2 cups milksalt & freshly ground black pepper to taste2 teaspoons rubbed oreganoCut the bread into cubes; something Italian seems appropriate. Whisk the eggs and milk together with the seasonings in a bowl sufficient to hold the bread, and add the bread. Let soak for about 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325°F. and lightly oil a 2 quart (8″ x 10″) shallow baking (lasagne) pan. 
Assemble & Bake the Strata:250 grams (8 ounces) mozzarella cheese2 to 3 cups prepared mixed pizza toppings, see note above180 grams (6 ounces) ricotta cheese1 to 1 1/4 cups tomato sauce Grate the mozzarella, and prepare your “pizza toppings”. If you wish to use vegetables such as onions, mushrooms, peppers, etc, they should be cut into appropriate sizes sautéd lightly. Tomatoes should be salted and drained for a few minutes. 
Mix only half of the mozzarella in, but otherwise mix most of the prepared toppings into the soaked bread; crumble in the ricotta. 
Carefully transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and spread it out evenly. Top it with the tomato sauce. Run a wooden spoon through it to allow some of the sauce to get down into the mixture. Sprinkle the reserved toppings over the strata, and finish with the remaining grated mozzarella.
Bake at 325°F for 45 to 55 minutes, then let the strata rest for 10 minutes before serving.Last year at this time I made Chicken Kerala Style. 

* Originally published here

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