Anaheim Chile Breakfast Casserole

An Anaheim pepper is a mild variety of chili pepper. The name “Anaheim” derives from Emilio Ortega, a farmer who brought the seeds to the Anaheim, California, area in the early 1900s.

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Serves: 6

7 cups stale french bread, cubed (about 1½ inch cubes)
7 eggs
1¼ cups milk
¼ teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoons dry mustard
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1 lb ground sausage
6 to 8 freshly roasted green chiles, peeled, seeded, and diced
½ a medium red bell pepper, diced
chopped green onions for garnish (optional)
maple syrup for serving (optional)

In a large cast iron skillet, cook the sausage over medium high heat until completely cooked through. Add the bell pepper and cook for an additional 3 minutes to soften pepper. Break up sausage into small crumbles with spatula. Set aside ¼ cup of meat and pepper mixture.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, salt, and mustard.
In a large bowl, combine the bread, egg mixture, green chiles, sausage and bell pepper, and 1½ cups of the cheese. Stir to combine well. Cover with plastic or transfer to a large ziploc bag, then place in fridge and let sit for approximately 30 minutes or until egg mixture has been entirely absorbed.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease and 8 inch spring form cake pan. Pour in the bread mixture. Top with reserved sausage and cheese then cover loosely with tin foil. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until golden and set in the middle. Remove from oven and let rest for about 5 minutes before removing spring form. Garnish with green onion and serve with a drizzle of maple syrup if desired.