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Tater Tot Casserole


thistle
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Both of my kids came home today & said, 'class party next Wed.' (half day before Xmas break)-well, at least I got advance warning. I asked, 'What did you volunteer me for?' My daughter-poundcake, no problem, can make it in my sleep-My son-bean dip, again no problem (more cheese than beans, but it's good) & the tater tot casserole he had at the potluck on Sat. & then he said, Mom, don't mess w/ it-it's just ground beef, cream of mush soup, tater tots, cheese.

I didn't have any, but I'm sure a little tweaking couldn't hurt-spicy turkey sausage, low sodium soup, worcestershire, smoked paprika, a little parmesan w/ the cheese? Or should I just make the damned tater tot casserole & be done with it?

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Both of my kids came home today & said, 'class party next Wed.' (half day before Xmas break)-well, at least I got advance warning. I asked, 'What did you volunteer me for?' My daughter-poundcake, no problem, can make it in my sleep-My son-bean dip, again no problem (more cheese than beans, but it's good) & the tater tot casserole he had at the potluck on Sat. & then he said, Mom, don't mess w/ it-it's just ground beef, cream of mush soup, tater tots, cheese.

I didn't have any, but I'm sure a little tweaking couldn't hurt-spicy turkey sausage, low sodium soup, worcestershire, smoked paprika, a little parmesan w/ the cheese? Or should I just make the damned tater tot casserole & be done with it?

I'd say just make the tater tot casserole without a lot of tweaking. Low-sodium soup, okay. Maybe turkey sausage instead of ground beef if you really want to, but otherwise, leave it alone.

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Wow. I think I must be seriously out of touch, because I don't know what a tater tot casserole is, and I've never heard of the Duggars.

I'd never head of the casserole either, but it sounds fairly self-explanatory, particularly after thistle's comment about what her son said. :)

Unfortunately, I do know who the Duggars are. I've never seen their show, but they show up on the Today Show on NBC every time they announce a new pregnancy/have another kid, which at the rate they've been going is at least once a year -- I usually watch the first half hour of Today as I'm getting ready in the morning, to get the news, and they'll promo segments like the Duggars'. These things just get wedged in there, and then wind up taking up space in my brain.

The casserole sounds sort of like a (terrible) twist on some version of shepherd's pie (tots instead of mashed potatoes?). It also reminds me of a baked pasta casserole-type dish that's one of only three things my father can cook that doesn't involve a grill, with the tots replacing the noodles. I guess the question is, why?

Waiting for the Napoleon Dynamite references to start ...

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I'd say just make the tater tot casserole without a lot of tweaking. Low-sodium soup, okay. Maybe turkey sausage instead of ground beef if you really want to, but otherwise, leave it alone.

Ditto. Given son's age + surrounding kids' age = wouldn't mess with it too much. They might boycott it and then ask your son questions why it's different. (Of course, this is an extreme scenario, so please ignore my imagination.) The point was that this type of food is his thing with his friends and tinkering it to your concerns about the ingredients used might upset the equilibrium established.

I guess the question is, why?

Because it tastes good. My mom found this recipe when I was 10 and proceeded to make it every free weekend she had for awhile. I ate a LOT of tater tots.

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Because it tastes good. My mom found this recipe when I was 10 and proceeded to make it every free weekend she had for awhile. I ate a LOT of tater tots.

Ha, good point! I think my "why" was more like, don't frozen tater tots cost more than noodles or regular potatoes/making them by scratch is harder than just using noodles ... so what's the point? But that's ignoring the whole "It's good, darnit!" argument! :)

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Ditto. Given son's age + surrounding kids' age = wouldn't mess with it too much. They might boycott it and then ask your son questions why it's different. (Of course, this is an extreme scenario, so please ignore my imagination.) The point was that this type of food is his thing with his friends and tinkering it to your concerns about the ingredients used might upset the equilibrium established.

Because it tastes good. My mom found this recipe when I was 10 and proceeded to make it every free weekend she had for awhile. I ate a LOT of tater tots.

Ate? I still eat a lot of tater tots.

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I think my "why" was more like, don't frozen tater tots cost more than noodles or regular potatoes/making them by scratch is harder than just using noodles ... so what's the point?

Good point also! Except I am not sure most would want to look up how to make tater tots and the generic brand of tater tots were only $1-$1.50 when I grew up. I think they price at $1.75-2 for generic these days, while Oreida and others are now $3.

Must make one for the picnic next time for you to try.

To mdt's point, I think unless I make my own, the last time I read Oreida's tater tot ingredients, they added onions to them, making them on the ix-nay list. #refluxfail. >wail<

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the tater tot casserole he had at the potluck on Sat. & then he said, Mom, don't mess w/ it-it's just ground beef, cream of mush soup, tater tots, cheese.

AKA white trasherole - if it ain't broke...

I'd say make it the original way (with low sodium soup) for the kids - it's good! It could be fun to play around with the recipe for a family meal though, and try some tweaks like you mentioned.

(1000yearegg may want to weigh in on this topic....)

It can happen at any time whatsoever.

That's a good thing - I'd be up for a post-holiday cookie exchange :)

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I'm going to make the basic tater tot casserole (because I'm sure there's nothing I could do to improve it that would impress a bunch of high school kids-they need the carbs, right? ok, maybe, I'll add smoked paprika, but that's it). & if anyone wants to do a post holiday cookie exchange, I'm in-anything to focus on life after Xmas-I'm stressing, because I get to transport the puppies (2 6 month old loves) & 15 lbs. of cookie dough to NC over the holidays....Merry Christmas, everyone!

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I'm making the tater tot casserole again for Tom's major time party on Friday, & he has volunteered to make baked ziti for the vegetarians in the class. Last year, I subbed ground bison for ground beef & sprinkled smoked paprika on top, not much else I can do with this, I guess. Lizzy has been making lots of white chocolate covered pretzels for her friends, the Utz pretzels in Xmas shapes are good for this...

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My moral dilemma returns, only now, it's just a PITA. My son told me the date of his party, I got tatertots & cream of something soup, tonight while I'm out trying to do some Xmas shopping, he asks if we have enough to make 2 tatertot casseroles, since they 'ran out last year'...I braved the commissary for more tatertots & soup & will use some of the lovely Omaha Steaks hamburgers we've been gifted with...argh, I wish December was over already....

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