CHORIZO-AVOCADO-TOMATO MEXICAN BREAKFAST CASSEROLE

Ingredients:

olive oil cooking spray

4 cups diced bread (I used ciabatta, but a hearty white or sourdough would work well too)

1 lb lean ground beef

6 oz chorizo sausage, casing removed (or 8 oz if really spicy is your thing)

1/2 medium onion, diced

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

1 cup baby spinach

6 eggs

1 cup milk

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground mustard

1 cup grated cheddar cheese, divided

1 cup Monterey Jack cheese with jalapenos (or pepper jack cheese), divided

1-1/2 cups tortilla chips

3 Roma tomatoes, halved and sliced thin thin thin

1 avocado (ripe but on the firm side–mine was a bit too ripe), diced

3 scallions, sliced thin

2 tbsp fresh-squeezed lime juice

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees; oil a large casserole dish (I used an oval 10×13″) and spread bread cubes over bottom; set aside

2)Heat a large skillet over medium-heat heat; add ground beef and chorizo (don’t forget to remove casing); cook about 5 minutes until meat browns; reduce heat to medium and drain off excess fat; add onion and red bell pepper to meat and cook 5 minutes until veggies soften; remove from heat, stir in spinach, and spoon mixture over bread cubes

3) In large bowl, beat eggs, milk, salt, and mustard; pour egg mixture over bread and meat mixture; scatter 1/2 cup each of cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses (reserving 1/2 cup each for topping) over top; scatter tortilla chips over cheeses; cover casserole with aluminum foil and bake 40-45 minutes

4) Meanwhile, in medium bowl gently mix tomatoes, avocado, scallions, and lime juice; refrigerate until ready to use

5) When toothpick inserted in center of casserole comes out clean, scatter reserved cheeses over tortilla chips and bake an additional 5 minutes (uncovered) until cheeses melt; remove from oven and spoon tomato-avocado mixture over top of casserole; serve immediately to the delight of your hungry ones

Servings: 6-8

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