Saturday, December 7, 2013

Fridge Frittata, mAryD's Church of Leftovers

 mAryD's Church of Leftovers
My grandparents would raise their eyebrows at my lack of fondness for tomatoes... They grew up in Chicago during the Depression, and couldn't fathom why I didn't want to just gobble up any fresh vegetable I could. 
That hasn't changed, I still hate tomatoes. What's really eyebrow raising is the way my children won't eat leftovers. I mean, it's fresh, heats up quicker than a hot pocket, and is (usually) a hundred times better the next day (seriously, they've done scientific tests--lasagna, potatoes, ham--all at least 50% better if you discover them in your fridge the day after a cooking bonanza).
So whatever, my kids are spoiled and crazy (and in need of military training). My little family of four has TWO birthdays between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and we are blended. So all that extra information means that most years I'm crying as I throw out tons and tons of my own leftovers as well as the awesome leftovers (and free Tupperware) that comes from everybody's second families. I cry (hard) as I think of the potential fuel for being better people they couldhave enjoyed. I cry for the hours I spent preparing and or talking relatives into donating ("No, we'll skip the awful dry extra turkey, but we'd probably eat the heck out of your mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, or pumpkin pie!") that I'll never get back.  Through my tears  I literally add up the dollar amounts and the hours I have to be away from my kids to put all that great food in the trash (which has to be done to make way in our limited Tupperware/cottage cheese or margarine containers supply) for the next all-day cook-fest that probably won't get eaten or appreciated more than once either.
This year, I say enough is enough. They will eat leftovers and they will like itOr else. (Or else "what" I don't know, I only know I should say it more often). In the meantime I'm going to do my part to church up the leftovers and not tell them (you don't go spilling the beans either).
Here is the post-Thanksgiving frittata (ish) I made from the leftovers in my fridge this morning.
 Fridge Frittata
First, I started with the Hawaiian Rolls that were left out last night, they were nice and dried out this morning. I began building the base by cubing (tearing works too) the rolls into the bottom of a 9x13 glass baking pan (spray a little non stick spray first). 
I used the tablespoon (or so) of softbutter that was left out to sauté the 3/4 of yellow onion that was in a sandwich bag in the door (unsure of how old that was, so I sautéed it at high heat, muhahaha). 
I cut up the last bits of ham from Thanksgiving last week and heated 'em with the now translucent onions. (This smell always does wonders for my mood).
While that was working, I discovered this block of Asadero Cheese (I'm sure I didn't buy that, but whatever)  that didn't get wrapped tightly and was going to dry out if I didn't use it. I cut that up and threw it in the 9x14 on top of the rolls.
In a separate bowl, I whipped up the7 eggs I had on hand with some milk(I accidentally bought a gallon after my boyfriend already bought two-d'oh!) I added a little Cajun seasoning, some dry mustard andWorcestershire and left it to the side.
I found my boyfriend's favoritesmashed potatoes from last night hidden under a jello mold, and threw little chucks of the cold smashed red potato, cheddar cheese, and sour cream mixture on top of the rolls and cheese in the 9x15 baking dish.
The ham and onion mixture was hot, so that went on top (by now the 9x14 was 3/4 full, so I was satisfied). I would have added some veggies here, but I would lose any chance of my kids eating it if I'd added the kernel corn leftovers from two days ago (but it would have been delicious!).
A poured the light yellow egg mixture on top of all that and let the egg soak into the bread while the oven preheated to 350 (Fahrenheit)(I was guessing here, but it seemed like a good plan).
I received a phone call and had to email some files, in total, I let the mixture soak up about an hour or so (if I'd wrapped it up and set it in the fridge that now had room I probably would let it set up all day, but I'm out of Saran Wrap -- tattoo wives will understand).
I decided it was time to fill the house with the smells of domestication, and put the rather heavy now full 9X20 baking dish in the oven.  Right before I did, I figured it PROBABLY needed a foil cover to keep it from burning.  I found out I'm also out of aluminum foil. I didn't panic, I just used a cookie sheet my kid didn't wash last night on top of the glass pan (it wasn't touching the ingredients, but watch out, 'cuz I guess this concoction rises) and set the timer to an hour and a half (the time I gave myself to write/edit this).
The phone rang again, and I had to talk an old editor/writing friend away from stepping into traffic (he's going to find some stronger narcotics, bless his heart).
The dog needed to go bark at the neighbor's mastiffs and I when I walked in from that, the timer was going off. 
I removed the cookie sheet and let it brown about 15 minutes while I wrote this on my phone as I was smoking in the garage (hopefully I can clean it up while enjoying a nice slice of leftover heaven while listening to my kid grumble about being forced labor for having to do the dishes from last night). 
I think I'll make a spinach salad tonight.
Let me know if anyone tries a version of this with their own leftovers!
(And hang in there, they CANNOT BE CHILDREN FOREVER... Unless of course you're my ex-husband and/or they have a trust fund, in which case it's completely likely).

With Respect,
Exit, pursued by a bear.
-Shakespearean stage directions, The Winter's Tale, act 3, sc. 3, l. 57 {1623}

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