1 pound sweet Italian turkey sausage
1 1/2 cups diced sweet onion (from about half a large onion)
8 ounces fresh sliced mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes (sometimes labeled country style)
2 cups shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1 cup diced green pepper (from about 1 small-medium pepper)
2-3 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced (to equal about 1 - 1 1/4 cups)
1/2 cup chopped green onions (from about 6 onions)
1 3/4 cup non-fat milk
1 1/2 teaspoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1. In a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, cook sausage, onions, mushrooms, and garlic until sausage is no longer pink and mushrooms have given off some of their liquid, about 10 minutes. Throughout cooking, stir to crumble sausage and break up mushrooms. (You can leave the mushrooms in larger slices or break them into almost unnoticeable little pieces as you crumble the sausage.) Drain the liquid.
2. In a 9x13 pan coated with cooking spray, layer potatoes (there is no need to thaw them), sausage mixture, 1 cup cheese, green peppers, tomatoes, and green onions.
3. In a medium bowl, combine eggs, milk, parsley, salt, basil, and pepper. Whisk thoroughly to combine, then add remaining 1 cup of cheese and whisk again. Pour egg mixture evenly over other ingredients in baking pan. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. (Alternately, you can bake this casserole immediately.)
4. In the morning, preheat the oven to 375.
5. Bake casserole, uncovered, for about 60-70 minutes, or until egg in middle is just set and edges are lightly golden brown.
6. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.
If you need to start on this recipe even earlier than the evening before your brunch, you can cook the sausage, onions, mushrooms, and garlic earlier in the day or a day ahead, and also chop the green peppers and green onions. Refrigerate the sausage mixture and the chopped peppers and onions in separate containers until assembling the casserole.
After the casserole is baked, you can refrigerate leftovers and reheat individual portions in the microwave for quick breakfasts all week.
This also freezes wonderfully. Pre-portion leftovers, wrap each portion individually in plastic, and store in a zipper container in the freezer. Microwave on several layers of paper towel to reheat as needed. After being frozen, the veggies let off water when reheated, but this casserole is still surprisingly terrific, so dont let that liquid worry you.
For Breakfasts On the Go (Or Snacks and Dinners on Busy Evenings): Nestle re-warmed slices of the casserole into a tortilla for a wrap.
Breakfast for Dinner: You can make this in the morning and refrigerate until baking, or prep it in the afternoon and then cook it immediately, for a fun "breakfast for dinner" option.