- 1 onion, chopped
- 1/2 lb (227 g) sliced ham, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
- 8 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 1/4 cups (560 ml) milk
- 1/2 cup (125 ml) 15% cream
- 8 cups (2 litres) stale bread, cut into cubes (baguette loaf, cheese and bacon bread, etc.)
- 4 cups (1 litre) baby spinach (watercress or arugula)
- 3 cups (750 ml) cooked or grilled vegetables (asparagus, peppers, peas, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.)
- 2 cups (500 ml) grated Gruyère cheese (cheddar or raclette)
- Salt and pepper
- In a large skillet, brown the onion and ham in the oil. Season with salt and pepper. Let cool.
- In a large bowl, combine the eggs, milk, and cream. Season with salt and pepper. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Spoon into a 33 x 23-cm (13 x 9-inch) baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 8 hours. Pressed for time, let the bread soak for only 1 hour.
- With the rack in the middle position, preheat the oven to 180 °C (350 °F).
- Remove the plastic wrap and bake for about 1 hour or until the centre of the strata is cooked. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and serve with a green salad.
Whole cooked ham will keep for up to 8 days in the refrigerator while sliced ham will only keep for 3 to 4 days. You can freeze ham for up to 2 months but its texture will be much less interesting and will be water logged.