Makes:8 to 10 servings
The combination of sourdough bread, eggs, sour cream, and chiles makes this dish a shoo-in for brunch. If you use fresh bread, it has an omeletlike consistency; if you use stale bread, it yields a more custardy consistency. Whichever way you make it, top it with salsa verde and sour cream for the ultimate indulgence.
What to buy: This strata goes great with our Tomatillo Salsa. If you don’t want to make your own, buy a high-quality salsa verde, preferably fresh from the refrigerated section of the grocery store.
Note: If you want a cheesier version, try topping the strata with shredded jalapeño Jack before cooking it.
If you have a gas stove, lay one poblano at a time over high heat, turning occasionally, until the skin is black on all sides, about 8 minutes per chile. Alternatively, turn on the oven to high broil. Once heated, place the poblanos on the top rack and broil until the skin is black on all sides, about 8 minutes. Place in a heatproof bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside until the chiles are cool enough to handle, about 10 to 15 minutes. Peel off the skins, remove the seeds, and cut the chiles into large dice.
Heat the oil in a medium frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion, season well with salt and pepper, and cook until tender and translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes. Set aside.
Coat a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with butter and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the bread, poblanos, sour cream, sautéed onion, salsa, and cilantro until everything is coated in sour cream. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish and set aside.
Whisk the eggs with the half-and-half in a separate large bowl; season with the measured salt and a good amount of pepper. Pour the custard over the bread mixture. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Heat the oven to 350°F. Remove the strata from the refrigerator about 20 to 30 minutes before you plan to bake it. Bake until the strata is puffed, golden brown, and slightly set in the center, about 50 to 55 minutes. Serve hot, and top with salsa and sour cream as desired.
Beverage pairing:Segura Viudas Reserva Heredad Brut Cava, Spain. This excellent brunch dish would naturally be paired with a good bubbly. This handcrafted cava from the Catalan section of Spain brings fresh lime and lemon overtones to add a spritz to the dish, while having low enough alcohol and enough sweetness to not clash with any heat that may come from the chiles.