- 8 ounces breakfast sausage or bulk sausage, casing removed
- 2 large shallots, minced (about 1/3 cup)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 12 to 16 1/2-inch-thick slices of day-old French bread (toast lightly if fresh)
- 6 ounces shredded cheese, such as Monterey Jack, Cheddar, or Swiss (1 1/2 cups)
- 10 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups half-and-half
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
- Heat the skillet over medium heat and, when hot, add the sausage. Cook until sausage begins to brown, breaking it into small pieces with a wooden spoon, about 4 minutes.
- Add the shallots to the skillet and continue to cook until meat is golden brown and the shallots are soft, about 2 minutes longer.
- Remove the skillet from the heat and set aside.
- Butter the baking dish and line the bottom with half of the bread slices.
- Top the bread slices with half of the sausage-shallot mixture and half of the grated cheese. Make another layer with the remaining bread, sausage, and cheese.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, salt, and pepper and whisk to combine.
- Pour the egg mixture evenly over the layered bread mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to overnight.
- Remove the casserole from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature for about 20 minutes. Position rack in center of oven and preheat the oven to 325Âº F.
- Remove the plastic wrap and bake the casserole, uncovered, until puffed and golden brown, about 1 hour.
- Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the casserole from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.