You might read that hangtown fry originated during the California Gold Rush when miners who’d struck it rich barged theatrically into saloons demanding the most extravagant dish in the house. The truth is, hangtown fry came about then when condemned criminals requested a lavish repast for their last meal. My version of this dish is unbreaded oysters, onions, and mild peppers in a frittata.
In an oven-proof 8-in. skillet, fry to a crisp three slices thick bacon. Drain and crumble, returning grease to frying pan. Beat four eggs very well, add a half dozen shucked drained oysters, with chopped onions and mild peppers. Reheat skillet, and add another tablespoon or so of oil. When oil is hot, add eggs and oysters, then pop into a hot oven until lightly browned. Top with bacon, and serve with sourdough toast.