Well, it was just a triumph for Breakfast Team Six this morning at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Franklin, Tennessee. Just a triumph.
As you can tell from this photo, presentation is not one of our strong points. We’ll have to work on that. However. HOWEVER. Our menu was outstanding if I do say so myself. And I do. You can see the leftovers from Miss Paula Deen’s Hash Brown and Sausage Casserole with Caramelized Onions (recipe to follow, naturally – I can’t taunt you like that). In the foreground are Beignets with powered sugar, cinnamon sugar and honey. In the small pot is sawmill gravy I made myself and not out of a mix. And in the big pot are cheese grits made by my new apprentice, Matthew Horton.
He made the grits and after he added a hunk of Velveeta to the pot he tasted them and said, “More Velveeta.” That boy was raised right. His dad, Kirby, is our made-to-order egg man. I told Matthew he did such a good job on the grits he will now be known as the grits man.
So, I have told you about Mr. Greer Carlisle’s pathological competitiveness in this Breakfast Team Challenge. If you happened to miss that, here’s the post. He is very proud of his homemade blueberry waffles, and rightly so. But blueberry waffles are not going to win this contest for you, my friend. This morning he came to breakfast just to check out what we were doing. Mark insisted on taking a picture of us together, two friendly competitors. Except can’t you kind of see a little grimace on Greer’s face? Sort of? Maybe it’s just me.
Paula Deen’s Hash Brown and Sausage Casserole with Caramelized Onions
2 tablespoons butter
2 large sweet onions, thinly sliced
1 pound ground pork sausage (I prefer Tennessee Pride, naturally)
1 8-ounce package sliced baby bella mushrooms
1 30-ounce package frozen hash browns
2 cups shredded white Cheddar cheese, divided
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 8-ounce container of sour cream
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, for ten minutes, or until tender. Increase heat to medium high and cook, stirring constantly until onions are brown and caramel colored. Remove and set aside.
Add sausage and mushrooms to the skillet. Cook over medium heat, breaking up sausage and mushrooms to small pieces until well browned and crumbly. (You don’t need to drain the sausage grease – it cooks the mushrooms).
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13-by-9 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, combine the onions, sausage mixture, hash browns, 1 cup of the cheese, soup and sour cream. Add salt and pepper to taste. Spoon mixture into the baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese (I also sprinkle with cornflake crumbs). Bake for 30 minutes.