Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club

Italian Breakfast Strata

Breakfast strata

This breakfast strata is perfect when you’re entertaining overnight guests, as it can be assembled the night before baking. My version is vegetarian, but you can top the bread with cooked Italian sausage, diced ham, diced pepperoni, or cooked bacon before pouring the egg mixture over it.


  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided use
  • 8 ounces cremini or mixed mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and coarsely chopped
  • 1 small onion, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, trimmed, seeded, and diced
  • 9 eggs
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning or dried basil
  • Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 cups day-old Italian bread, cut or torn into bite-size pieces
  • 12 pitted green or black olives, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, divided use
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
  • 8 ounces baby arugula, spinach, or mixed greens
  • Cherry tomatoes, for garnish (optional)


Step 1

Warm a skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the mushrooms and sauté until the mushrooms have given up their liquid and are beginning to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the onion and bell pepper and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes more. Let the mixture cool.

Step 2

In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, milk, mustard, and Italian seasoning. Whisk, adding
1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.

Step 3

Use one tablespoon of oil to coat the inside of a 9×13 baking dish. Arrange the bread in a single layer in the bottom. Top with the sautéed vegetables and the olives, followed by 1 cup of cheese. Evenly pour the egg mixture over the strata, then sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Cover the strata with foil and refrigerate for several hours, preferably overnight. Let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.

Step 4

When ready to cook, heat the oven to 350°F. Remove the foil from the strata and reserve. Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Recover loosely with the foil and bake for another 30 to 40 minutes, or until the center is puffy and the edges have browned.

Step 5

In the meantime, make a vinaigrette: Place 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a small bowl. Whisk in the lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Lightly dress the arugula with the vinaigrette. Let the strata sit for 10 minutes before cutting into squares. Garnish each plate with the arugula and cherry tomatoes, if using.

Yields 10 servings