After twenty-five years of marriage, I finally broke down a few months ago and made my first tater tot casserole. I don’t know what possessed me to do so, but I did it, and now there’s no turning back … because they absolutely loved it. Their eyes — when they could pull them from the sloppy concoction in from of them — looked on me with adoration and gratitude. Who knew? I had always disdained this particular casserole. Tater tots? I’d think. Really? Can’t you think of anything more imaginative than that? But … there’s something to it. I can’t fight its popularity. So I’m sticking it in the rotation, such that it is. And tonight was appearance #3.
This is one of those dishes in which I use a bag of pre-cooked hamburger. (Discussed in my post on Batch Cooking vs. OAMC). Last week, I cooked about 10 lbs of hamburger — half seasoned for Italian dishes and half seasoned for Mexican dishes — and froze it in 4 cup servings. I love opening the freezer and seeing those waiting baggies. Half the work is already done.
So here’s my tweaked and twiddled version of Tater Tot Casserole:
- About 2 lbs of frozen tater tots
- About 4 cups of hamburger cooked with onion and green pepper, and seasoned with Italian seasoning and garlic
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 1 can cream of chicken soup
- 1 can of milk
- shredded cheddar cheese
In a greased 9 x 13 pan, spread half the tater tots. Add the cooked and seasoned hamburger. Mix the two soups together with the one can of milk and spread over the hamburger mixture. Sprinkle with lots of cheese. Top with the remaining tater tots.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until golden and bubbly.
I don’t blame you if you turn your nose up at this … but you’ll be missing out, nonetheless 🙂