Adventures in Eating: Ham, Broccoli, & Egg Souffle

I will never move again. However, I am reminded by many that one should “never” say “never”. Well, at least the next move will be in the twilight years, when our needs are a bit different.

The Mayflower van pulled up with Paul still sorting and packing his boxes of papers and magazines. The accumula­tion of 25 years was mind boggling. Much of our furniture was already shipped to our three accepting children.

Yet, the largest semi Mayflower had groaned with the Kalemkiarian’s boxed stuff. The movers stated that they had never in 7 years experience, filled a van that size primarily with boxes. The total weight came to 22,000 lbs. Thirteen hours to load the van and 14 hours to unload it. The weighted semi refused to back up all the way to our new front door. Consequently, a dolly was the only way to empty its contents. The weather was in the 80s and the movers also groaned from time to time.

Friends were kind and thoughtful with their invitations to say “goodbye”. It helped take the “sting” out of the move, and the memory of that incredible day.

One very special group of friends fêted us with a “Goodbye Brunch”. Platters of fresh kiwi, luscious stemmed strawber­ries, mini cinnamon rolls, rich brewed coffee, and this wonderful overnight souffle casserole. It was quickly devoured by all and sundry. Mary Jane was our hostess and shared the recipe with me. I was surprised when I read that the casserole was baked with a pan of water on the lower shelf. That gave it the moistness I had not had in similar casseroles. It puffed up mag­nificently and stayed that way.

I loved it, as it will lend itself to such a variety of mixtures: sauteed sausage, sau­teed mushrooms, leftover chicken, etc. instead of ham. Serve it with a chilled glass of champagne or a Chenin Blanc, and anyone would could handle a move.


Serves 10.

12 slices sandwich bread

1 lbgrated sharp cheese

2 tbsp minced onion

1 lb cooked broccoli, bite-sized pieces

2 cups sliced ham, pieces

6 eggs

3 1/2 cups milk

1 1/4 tsp dry mustard

3/4 tsp salt

Butter bread on one side, make two stacks and with a bread knife cut off crusts. Cube the bread. Place half the cubes in 9 x 13 casserole. Sprinkle half the cheese over bread, also half the onion. Put broccoli and ham over above. Repeat bread, cheese & onion. Pour egg mixture over all, press down to wet bread. Cover, refrigerate 24 hrs. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour with pan of hot water on shelf below the casserole.

– Rosemarie

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