Smoked Salmon and Spinach Goat Cheese Strata

A secret ingredient makes this gluten-free strata recipe special. The day was clear and ch...


Gluten free strata recipe with waffles
A secret ingredient makes this gluten-free strata recipe special.

The day was clear and chilly here by the mesa. Perfect for a pinon fire in the kiva. We lit vanilla candles and played my favorite mix of winter music- traditional Jewish and Celtic with a little Tom Waits, Sarah McLachlan and Joni Mitchell- pining about rivers or snow or waltzing Matilda- thrown in.

Gluten-Free Smoked Salmon and Spinach Goat Cheese Strata Recipe


Serving strata makes entertaining so easy. And the colors are so festive. Make it a day ahead to let the custard seep in and get happy. My secret? I don't use bread. I use gently toasted gluten-free waffles instead--- and Babycakes! Such a golden pastry-like crust they make. It melts in your mouth. Like buttah.

Ingredients:

Extra virgin olive oil
8 plain gluten-free waffles, lightly toasted
3 cups hand torn pieces of smoked salmon
1 20 oz. bag chopped frozen spinach, thawed, drained well
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste
A pinch of nutmeg, to taste
1 15-oz jar organic red and yellow roasted peppers, drained, seeded, cut into strips
12 medium to large organic free-range eggs
1 cup Half and Half
Nutmeg or Old Bay Seasoning, to taste
8 oz. fresh goat cheese
2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan

Instructions:

Prepare a large lasagna-style baking pan- say, 12 x 15 inches- by schmearing it with extra virgin olive oil.

Tear the cooled waffles into two or three pieces and line the bottom and sides of the oiled pan to make a crust.

Dump the thawed spinach into a warm skillet, add the garlic, season with sea salt and pepper. Stir and cook it down over medium to low heat until all the liquid is reduced, about ten minutes. Press with paper towels, if needed, to remove all the moisture. You don't want a soggy strata, now do you? Remove from heat and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the heck out of the dozen eggs and add the milk. Add a dash of nutmeg or Old Bay Seasoning, to taste.


Assemble the strata:

Scatter the smoked salmon all over the waffles. Cut and layer the goat cheese evenly over the salmon. Spread the garlicky spinach evenly over the goat cheese. Press the spinach with a flat spatula [if there is any remaining liquid, blot it up with a clean paper towel]. Add a layer of red and yellow pepper strips. Pat gently with the spatula to flatten. Slowly pour the egg custard all over the layers, and allow the mixture to seep in and around all the nooks and crannies, without disturbing the layers. You want the egg custard to reach the bottom crust and soak in. Sprinkle some shredded Parmesan all over the top- but not too much- let the beautiful red and green colors of the spinach and peppers show through.

Cover the strata with plastic wrap and chill overnight (or at least eight hours).

Next Day:

Remove the strata from the fridge thirty minutes before baking. Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF. Take off the plastic wrap and bake the strata in the center of the oven till set and slightly golden. For me, that was about 45 to 50 minutes, but it can cook for up to an hour, depending upon the size and depth of your dish, your altitude, etc.. Just keep an eye on it. Test the center with a wooden pick to make sure it is cooked all the way through.

Set the strata on a wire rack for ten minutes before slicing and serving.

Serves 6 hearty appetites or 8 as a light meal or side dish.

Serve with muffins and a winter fruit salad, if desired.

Need to make some waffles for a crust? My Savory Waffle recipe is here.



Recipe Source: glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com

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