Asparagus and Red-Pepper Strata
  • 3cups fresh asparagus (about 1 pound), tough stems removed
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1cup nonfat or low-fat milk
  • 1/2teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4teaspoon white pepper
  • 1teaspoon dried basil
  • 3cups whole-grain bread cubes, crusts removed5-6 slices
  • 1cup chopped red bell pepperabout 1 medium pepper
  • 2cups thinly sliced mushroomsabout 5 ounces
  • 1cup finely chopped white or yellow onion
  • 1cup grated Swiss or Emmenthaler cheeseabout 2 ounces
  • 1/4cup grated Parmesan, Asiago, or other sharp, hard cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Spray a 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Cut asparagus on the diagonal into 1-inch pieces. Blanch in boiling, salted water for 1 minute, then transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat eggs. Whisk in sour cream, milk, red pepper flakes, white pepper, and basil.
  4. Place half of the bread cubes in the baking dish, then layer on half of the asparagus, red pepper, mushrooms, onions, and Swiss cheese. Pour half of the egg mixture over the vegetables. Lightly press down with a spatula. Repeat all layers. Top with Parmesan cheese. Press down again and let stand for 10 minutes.
  5. Bake for 45–50 minutes, until firm in center and lightly browned. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.