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Fridge Dump Frittata

When you live with a house full of teenagers you can never be sure what the mornings will bring. I'm an unapologetic morning person. I catch the worm and - according to the eggheads - am healthier, more successful and have better sex." I'm also the first to greet the kids' mess from the night before. Lights on, plates piled in the sink and evidence that there may be more mouths to feed than last counted. While this is all new to me as a stepmom, I was no stranger to a house full of kids - blood-related and besties - growing up in Miami. We were those kids and we lived in that house. Before he became a bad-ass lawyer, who they called "The Shark," my father started the first classical radio station in what was then a sleepy South Florida tourist town. The story is that he even climbed to the top of the building to install the antenna. He had dropped out of Columbia Law School and was trying on different lives to see what fit. He had a stint in advertising and hitchhiked across the country to farm the grape fields of California. Eventually, he graduated from the University of Miami Law School, met my mom, had us, worked with the Audubon Society to fight the development of the coastline, protested the Vietnam War, was a pioneering diver of the Red Sea and spent countless hours cheering us on at horse shows. Sunday mornings were met with classical music, fresh bagels and kids pouring out of every room. He was always "The Shark" in the courtroom, but on Sunday mornings he was the quiet, kind host to way too many kids and their messes.

So this morning and the aforementioned house full of kids. It's Christmas and Jeff and I are the only ones up. After playing "Cards Against Humanity" until late (for us), the kids are still sleeping and we're those Jews who don't quite know what to do with ourselves before going to the movies and then out for Chinese. We're flying to Mexico tomorrow and had been strategically eating our way through the contents of the fridge so that we didn't come back in a week to anything rotting. But the best laid plans found us with a house full of hungry kids and a near empty fridge. The answer is a fridge dump frittata. A frittata is basically a quiche with no crust or a baked omelet. It's great for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It's good hot out of the oven but is also pretty fabulous at room temp after sitting on the counter as the kids roll out of bed throughout the morning.

As I prepare to make the frittata, I find that we still have four strips of really good bacon from our fave butcher, which I cook for Jeff and me - the early birds win. If I'm owning my role as a stepmom, I was forced to sacrifice the bacon for the sake of using the grease to make the kids a frittata. But if I'm telling the truth, I loved every piece of that crisp, delicious bacon - eating it while standing over the kitchen counter in a still-quiet house with my husband.

Preheat the oven to 400F

Rendered Bacon Fat

1T Butter

6 Eggs, beaten

1 Onion, chopped

1 C Mushrooms, chopped

1 C Arugula

1/2 C Cheddar, shredded

Salt/pepper to taste

Heat the fat in a nonstick pan to medium high. Yes - you can use a healthy fat, like olive oil (but bacon is good, so live a little). Sautee the onions with a sprinkle of salt and pepper until soft. Add the mushrooms and continue to sautee until you've rendered out the liquid. Add the butter and sautee until melted then add the arugula. Continue to sautee until the greens are brightly colored and soft. Then pour in the eggs and grated cheese and stir. Evenly cooking is key, so the trick is to pull back the sides and pour the liquid on top over the edges to ensure that you don't have runny egg on top and a browned bottom. After a couple of minutes, put the pan in the oven for about two more minutes to bake off the top. Take it out of the oven, sprinkle with finishing salt and more cheese if you like and slice it like a pie.

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