My good friend Patty makes a really great Breakfast Bake with ground sausage, eggs, cheese, and a crust made of crescent roll dough. I have made it a bunch of times and we’ve always loved it. However, one time when I signed up to bring a casserole to a MOPS meeting I realized quite late that I did not have the ground sausage nor the crescent roll dough. Now what? It was too late for a grocery store run, so I pulled out what I did have and rolled with it. I must say, this turned out really excellent as well.
1 1/2 pounds potatoes, skins on, scrubbed and diced
1 pound smoked sausage, diced (sometimes they come in 14 oz. packages instead of 16 oz., it’s not a whole pound but it works just fine)
2/3 cup buttermilk (naturally, regular milk will work fine, but I think the tang from the buttermilk plays well with the spicy sausage)
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. onion powder (or dried minced onion)
1/2 tsp. dill weed (I love dill in my eggs but if you don’t, just substitute dried parsley or basil)
1/4 – 1/2 tsp. chili powder or paprika (depending on your spice preference and how hot your sausage might already be)
1 1/2 cups shredded cheese
1) Cook diced sausage in a skillet over medium heat just until heated through, not crisped on the outside. Remove to paper towels to drain.
2) Pour out all but a teaspoon or two of the rendered fat. Toss in the potatoes and cook over medium-high heat until lightly browned and softened, not crunchy.
3) Layer the potatoes on the bottom of a 9×13″ pan that has been sprayed with non-stick.
4) Scatter the sausage evenly over the top.
5) Whisk up the eggs, buttermilk, and seasonings. Pour evenly over the sausage and potatoes.
6) Top with shredded cheese and bake for 20-30 minutes at 350° until the eggs are set.
7) Allow to rest for a couple of minutes before cutting and serving. Jason and my boys appreciate a little ketchup on top, but I like mine as-is so that I can taste all the flavors that the ketchup would cover. So good!
Tip: I have seen a Spanish version of this on Food Network with sliced potatoes instead of diced, no cheese, some fresh diced tomatoes tossed in, baked in a round skillet, and flipped out like a pancake after the eggs were set and the whole thing was partially cooled. I’m looking forward to trying it that way some time.