Wednesday, November 19, 2008
White Castle and Bacon Breakfast Bake
I have seen a couple of recipes floating around for "Castle Casseroles" that piqued my interest into the idea of using White Castle sliders as a component of a dish. None of the recipes I saw really sounded too good, so I decided to try to think of something on my own. I envisioned a kind of savory bread pudding made out of sliders, what I ended up with was OK, it didn't meet my expectations but I thought the concept was sound and might inspire someone else to outdo me. Then I can steal their recipe.
Unfortunately, we do not have an actual White Castle franchise locally in the Capital Region so I had to resort to using frozen burgers.
I removed the tops and arranged the sliders in an oven proof dish, making sure that they were somewhat compactly arranged.
It just wouldn't be normal if I didn't find some way to wedge bacon into a dish, so I fried up a few slices.
I layered some cheese on top of the burgers and topped with the cooked bacon.
At this point I replace the tops of the buns and whipped up an egg mixture. I used 2 cups milk and 6 eggs seasoned with salt and pepper. This ended up being way too much, I think you could get away with 1 cup milk and 4 eggs.
I poured this over the sliders and kind of tamped them down so they would absorb as much of the liquid as possible. One of my secrets to good bread pudding is to let it sit for a while to allow the bread to really become sodden with the egg mixture, so I let the sliders soak for about 30 minutes and then topped with some more cheese.
I threw this into a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes. It came out nice and brown and puffy. The sliders had coagulated into one contiguous mass and it smelled pretty good.
Verdict: This was pretty good, it kind of reminded me of the sausage, egg, cheese bake we all made at Farnsworth Middle School in home ec. back in 6th grade. It definitely had a kind of breakfast quiche feel. I think the bread absorbed a little too much egg mixture and became a little too omelet-esque. In fact, the whole thing was kind of like eating a weird, bready, slider omelet. This was not necessarily a bad thing, I think a little futzing with ratios of milk and eggs to improve the texture would elevate this to a sublime level. I also think the frozen buns were much drier than usual Castle sliders, I think had I used fresh 'uns this actually would have been much better. I think maybe even a Slider Gratin would be pretty good, layered fresh sliders with some heavy cream, baked in the oven without egg? Perhaps? But anyways, I chalk this one up to experience and implore anyone out there who has access to fresh White Castle to attempt to refine this idea.