Strata For Mother’s Day

With Mother’s Day just around the corner, I asked our curd nerd and still new mom, Chef Tracey Shepos Cenami, to talk about her favorite dish for this special day. Cheers to all the moms out there. – Justin

As a mom to a 16-month old, I love that I get another day every year (second to my birthday) where it is customary to be treated like royalty, at least by my husband.  I yearn for what most moms’ desire on this special day: to be pampered a bit, to sleep in and, of course, breakfast in bed.

One of my favorite breakfast or brunch dishes is a strata. This is a savory bread pudding that is easy to personalize and use seasonal ingredients. This is a great dish to serve at any brunch gathering because it is hearty and decadent without being overindulgent. One of the best parts is that a strata is best made the night before and just popped into the oven to bake in the morning.

At the Kendall-Jackson Wine Center, we rely on our bountiful gardens for the best of what each season has to offer.  A strata is an ideal opportunity to take advantage of some of spring’s finest offerings like asparagus, spring onions and green garlic.  I also love adding in a favorite local cheese like Bellwether Farms Carmody or Estero Gold from Valley Ford.

Here are some other suggestions for throughout the year: summerheirloom tomatoes, basil and roasted peppers with Estero Gold Cheese; fall– butternut squash, sage, chard with aged Two Rock Goat Cheese; and winter– wild mushrooms, spinach, sausage and Cypress Grove Chevre.  You could even stay traditional with applewood smoked bacon or appeal to mom’s sweet tooth with a version using fresh berries and ricotta cheese.

Find out what your mom’s favorite ingredients are and whip up this easy-for-you and impressive-to-her Mother’s Day dish.  We may not all be the real Queen Mother but this will certainly be a good start.  A diamond tiara wouldn’t hurt either.

Serves 6
Enjoy with a glass of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Gris.


  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch asparagus, sliced into rings
  • 3 white spring onions, greens trimmed and sliced, whites minced
  • 3 stems green garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 eggs
  • 8 cups hearty bread, cubed
  • 1½ cups Bellwether Farms Carmody, grated
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp. butter (for buttering the dish)


  1. Heat oil in large sauté pan and add asparagus, onions, garlic and thyme. Season with salt and pepper and sauté on medium heat until vegetables are just tender. Chill.
  2. Whip eggs until frothy and combine with remaining ingredients. Toss everything together and season with 1 tablespoon salt. Place in a buttered, 13×9-inch baking dish and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. If refrigerating overnight, allow the strata to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes prior to baking.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350⁰F.
  4. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until eggs are cooked through and top is browned.