You know the scenario. It’s the morning after Thanksgiving and you’re recovering from a day of marathon cooking and pulling off a holiday feast with all the fixins, Your kitchen still looks like it’s been ransacked, you still have dishpan hands and the only thing you want to do is pull your duvet cover over your head and sleep in. But everyone else in the house seems to be awake and suddenly you hear someone say the four words you’ve been dreading. “So, what’s for breakfast?”
After killing yourself putting together a holiday meal, the last meal any host wants to think about is breakfast. But the thing about house guests (especially those permanent house guests also known as your kids) is that it doesn’t matter how much turkey they ate the day before, they’re going to wake up hungry. As any veteran host knows, the best defense is a pan of something wonderful tucked away in your freezer that requires no more work from you other than turning on the oven. For this reason, even though it’s a simple, no-frills dish, the breakfast casserole is pure genius.
The base of our Primal breakfast casserole is a straightforward mixture of beaten eggs and grated turnips. Turnips have the mildly earthy flavor that most root vegetables share and just a hint of sweetness. In fact, some of your guests might not even realize that they’re not eating potato hash browns. Once you have a base for your casserole, you can add almost anything you want to it. A simple duo of sausage and scallions is a favorite combination, but you can load the casserole up with more if you like. Diced peppers, mushrooms, bacon, grated cheese and any fresh herbs or dried spices that your heart desires can all be mixed in with great results.
The recipe below can easily be doubled and baked in a 13×9 pan for a larger crowd. Simply mix the ingredients together, cover the pan with foil, and freeze until you need it. The casserole can go directly into the oven from the freezer. You don’t have to freeze the casserole ahead of a time, of course. You can mix it together and put it directly in the oven the day you’re serving it. For the sake of your sanity, however, you might want to consider the freeze-ahead option. This way, you can still be half-asleep the morning after Thanksgiving and hardly lift a finger to feed the masses.
Approximately 4 servings
1 pound ground breakfast sausage or other ground meat
3 turnips, peeled and grated (a food processor works well for this)
4 eggs, beaten
3 scallions, chopped
Sauté sausage, breaking it up into small pieces with a spoon or spatula, until almost cooked through.
Mix the sausage with the rest of the ingredients.
Spoon into a 8×8 baking pan.
When ready to cook, heat oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 45 minutes then cover the pan and bake for 25 minutes more. Let cool 15-20 minutes so the casserole sets before cutting into it.