Cheesy (Bacon or Ham) & Egg Casserole

8 slices bacon  -- or 3/4 Cup Ham cut in small pieces

1 medium onion, chopped (1 cup)  ---( Sauteed )

1 loaf (8 ounces) Italian bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (5 cups)

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1 cup cottage cheese

7 eggs

1 1/2 cups milk.... ( 2 cups if you fix the night before )

1/2 teaspoon Mustard, Ground

1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg, Ground

1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper, Ground

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook bacon in large skillet until crisp. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the drippings. Drain bacon on paper towels; crumble and set aside. Add onion to drippings in skillet; cook and stir 3 minutes or until softened. 

2. Spread 1/2 of the bread cubes in 13x9-inch baking dish. Layer with 1/2 each of the onion, bacon, Cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese. Spread evenly with cottage cheese. Top with remaining bread cubes, onion, bacon, Cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese. 

3. Beat eggs in medium bowl until foamy. Add milk, mustard, nutmeg and pepper; beat until blended. Pour evenly over top. Press bread cubes lightly into egg mixture until completely covered. Let stand 10 minutes. 

4. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until center is set and top is golden brown.

Make Ahead: Casserole can be assembled 1 day ahead. Prepare as directed, increasing milk to 2 cups. Cover and store in refrigerator. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking.  Remove cover and bake as directed.  Can put tin foil on and remove 15-20 minutes before done.

per serving

Calories: 260

Makes 12 servings.

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 50 minutes