We had the nicest surprise this week! Over the weekend Jamie’s former college professor/running buddy/Army mentor texted him that he and his wife (also a Lt. Col.) were going to be passing through our area and wanted to meet us for breakfast. We were both equally thrilled because he’s always been very special to both of us. I met him the same weekend that I met Jamie back in 2008, and he continued to take exceptional care of us during Jamie’s time at West Point and beyond.
There’s another great couple that’s stationed here at Riley that they also wanted to see, so on a whim I extended the invitation to have everyone over here to eat instead of going out. Selfishly, I knew that this would be easier with the girls, but I also knew that we’d get more out of our two hours together if we were at someone’s home than if we were out to eat.
I’ve hosted a zillion dinners, showers, happy hours, and even a few lunches… but breakfast… I’d never hosted a sit-down breakfast before. Of course this thought didn’t hit me until after I casually made the offer, so I had my work cut out for me to figure out how to throw this together. 🙂
I did a little bit of research on Pinterest about breakfast etiquette, and then decided to keep it simple and casual because I knew that’s what our guests would want.
I decided to serve three things: a bowl of fresh strawberries and pineapple, my mom’s signature breakfast casserole, and an array of doughnuts from our most favorite local doughnut shop called Varsity.
For drinks we served chilled water and orange juice. We also made sure to have plenty of coffee, creamer, and sugar. Since I’m not a coffee drinker, Jamie took over that department of serving everyone coffee just the way they liked it.
My mom passed down this casserole recipe to me years ago when I was getting ready to host Christmas for my in-laws back in 2011, and it’s been a staple in our home ever since.
I prepped it the afternoon before, let it set overnight (like the recipe calls), and then popped it in the oven as soon as I woke up Tuesday morning, allowing it enough time to bake (65-70 minutes) before our guests arrived.
Personal Creations recently reached out to me and offered to gift us this fabulous 9×13″ baking/lasagna dish, and I was excited to see that my casserole recipe called to be prepared in dish that measured just like this one! This is definitely the most attractive (and well made) baking dish I’ve ever owned, and I was proud to plop this one right on the table so that everyone could snag second helpings if they desired.
We had such a nice, relaxed couple of hours catching up with both couples and having everyone over to our home. The girls were thankfully super well behaved (we had no shame in using the TV as a babysitter for Hadley for the first half of our breakfast) and Sadie stayed awake and smiled at everyone for part of the time before crashing hard for her morning nap for the rest. 🙂
I’d highly recommend my mom’s breakfast casserole to enjoy with your family, to serve at a morning social event, or (best of all) serve piping hot on Christmas morning.
- 1 16oz. tube of sausage
- 12 slices of white bread, cubed
- 1.5 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp powdered mustard
- 12 eggs
- 4 cups of milk
- Cook sausage and set aside.
- Cube bread and then combine in a large bowl with sausage, shredded cheese, salt, and mustard.
- In separate bowl, whisk together eggs and milk.
- Lightly grease a 9"x13" pan and cover bottom of the pan with the sausage mixture.
- Pour egg mixture atop sausage mixture.
- Cover and refrigerator at least two hours, but preferably overnight.
- Bake uncovered for 65-70 minutes at 350.