You can use any mushrooms you like in this dish. I like to use a mix of criminis and shiitakes, mostly because those are the two kinds my local co-op carries reliably, but also because it makes the dish much more interesting. This sits squarely in the realm of comfort food, and is even good eaten cold for breakfast. Serves 6-8
8 oz mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 medium red onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch chard, chopped
4 c milk
1 loaf day-old challah, roughly torn (approx 8 cups)
4 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Butter as needed
Salt and pepper to taste
Saute the mushrooms and onion until the mushrooms are browned and the onions are transparent. Add garlic and cook a minute or two longer. Steam the chopped chard, then squeeze out all the liquid and add to the mushroom mixture. Toss with the challah, then turn into a buttered 9×13 baking dish.
Whisk the eggs, milk, salt, and pepper together until foamy, then pour into the baking dish. Top with cheese, then bake, covered with foil, at 375 for 60 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 minutes longer. When a toothpick comes out clean, the kugel is done. Enjoy with a big salad and a bowl of tomato soup on a chilly day.