Colorful and delicious, this is our favorite dish for a special occasion. Whether it’s Fourth of July, Mother’s Day, or Christmas Morning, you can be calm, cool, & collected by assembling the casserole in advance and popping it in the oven while you cook spicy sausage patties and fill bowls with individual servings of beautiful fresh fruit. In order to make this in Spring or Summer, you’ll have to buy and freeze cranberries when they’re in season. Always use fresh blueberries because the frozen ones tend to turn the whole thing purple and never use anything but real maple Syrup. For a nice texture, I like to use a soft grocery store bread by Nature’s Own such as White Wheat (shown in the photo), Honey Wheat, or 100% Whole Wheat.
10 slices White Wheat bread, coarsely torn, including crusts
4 oz cream cheese in 1/2″ pinches
1/2 cup fresh blueberries + 1/2 cup cranberries
12 well beaten eggs
3/4 cup half and half
3/4 cup real maple syrup
1 1/2 cups skim milk
1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
In greased 9X13 baking pan, layer half of torn bread. Scatter evenly the pinches of cream cheese, the blueberries, and the cranberries. Top with remaining half of torn bread. Mix eggs well, then add half & half, maple, syrup, and skim milk. When completely blended, add cinnamon and mix briefly. Pour over bread layers. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Preheat oven to 325 and bake uncovered about 70 minutes until risen and lightly browned. Top with melted butter before serving. Makes six generous servings.
Colonial Pines Inn Bed and Breakfast, 541 Hickory Street, Highlands NC
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