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Tater Tots


Hannah
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I've never had Bourbon's tater tots. I just can't do it. I was ruined for life on tater tots by the Arlington County elementary school that I attended, and I just can't even look at the things anymore. It seemed that we had them EVERY day. Ugh.
Oh good, I'm not the only person who was traumatized by school cafeteria tater tots. I was starting to wonder.
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Oh good, I'm not the only person who was traumatized by school cafeteria tater tots. I was starting to wonder.

I'm always in for a crispy, nicely browned tater tot. I think they are a perfect DVD-watching snack. I have, however, been traumatized by my Aunt's "Tater Tot Casserole" which is basically a bag of tots tossed with loads of cheese, cream, frozen peas and and topped with ketchup. It tasted like baked vomit. :mellow: This happened over 12 years ago and I still feel the need to brush my teeth every time I think about it.

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Eeeeewwww. :mellow: Why would you waste perfectly good truffles on something as vile as a tater tot, short of some bizarre hallucinogen- or alcohol-induced "seemed-like-a-good-idea-at-the-time" late night cooking experiment?

Don't eat tater tots under the influence of hallucinogens. Don't ask me how I know. Trust me on this one.

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Eeeeewwww. :mellow: Why would you waste perfectly good truffles on something as vile as a tater tot, short of some bizarre hallucinogen- or alcohol-induced "seemed-like-a-good-idea-at-the-time" late night cooking experiment?
These were HOMEMADE tater tots. It's all about combining low- and high-brow, like how Michel Richard uses Rice Krispies in his dishes.

This thread surprises me. I thought that tater tots were beloved the world over. Maybe it's a generation thing?

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This thread surprises me. I thought that tater tots were beloved the world over. Maybe it's a generation thing?
What generation would that be? I was raised in the 70's and have probably consumed thousands of tater tots in my lifetime as part of TV dinners and school lunches. They do not make me misty-eyed.
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These were HOMEMADE tater tots. It's all about combining low- and high-brow, like how Michel Richard uses Rice Krispies in his dishes.

This thread surprises me. I thought that tater tots were beloved the world over. Maybe it's a generation thing?

Unless you're a lot younger than you look, I don't think there's a big generation gap. :mellow: Maybe your school cafeteria was a lot better than mine.
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I'm always in for a crispy, nicely browned tater tot. I think they are a perfect DVD-watching snack. I have, however, been traumatized by my Aunt's "Tater Tot Casserole" which is basically a bag of tots tossed with loads of cheese, cream, frozen peas and and topped with ketchup. It tasted like baked vomit. :mellow: This happened over 12 years ago and I still feel the need to brush my teeth every time I think about it.

Clearly your aunt missed the correct execution of "tater tot casserole". The tater tots go on -top- of the casserole to provide a crunchy topping. You never mix the tater tots into the casserole.

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I love tater tots, and even the school cafeteria couldn't ruin them for me. We still keep a bag in the freezer for those days we just can't decide what starch to make with dinner. What I miss however, was the tater tots with onion. I have not been able to find them in any local grocery in several years.

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I love tater tots, and even the school cafeteria couldn't ruin them for me. We still keep a bag in the freezer for those days we just can't decide what starch to make with dinner. What I miss however, was the tater tots with onion. I have not been able to find them in any local grocery in several years.

Tater tots were always welcome on my plate when I was a kid. Certainly was an improvement over my mother's instant whipped potatoes from a box.

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That's what we call a "Dan"alogy. :mellow:

What about so many restaurants serving cotton candy at the end of dishes? Or including Pop Rocks in dessert?

Are there that many including these items? Anyone using cotton candy or pop rocks besides 2941 and minibar?

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Clearly your aunt missed the correct execution of "tater tot casserole". The tater tots go on -top- of the casserole to provide a crunchy topping. You never mix the tater tots into the casserole.

I think she was just trying to make an impression on my family with her new recipe. She succeeded in that effort. :mellow:

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This thread surprises me. I thought that tater tots were beloved the world over. Maybe it's a generation thing?
I never ate tater tots as a kid. They were one of the foods, like Kraft mac and cheese, that I tried as an adult, since I figured I'd missed out on something by never eating them as a kid.

My husband never ate them when he was young either. After I made them a few times, he issued the same veto over them as he did over the Kraft mac and cheese :mellow:.

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These were HOMEMADE tater tots. It's all about combining low- and high-brow, like how Michel Richard uses Rice Krispies in his dishes.

This thread surprises me. I thought that tater tots were beloved the world over. Maybe it's a generation thing?

My experiences with highbrow/lobrow combos has never been good. Don't eat the Coco Crispies at Citronelle or the Pop Rocks anywhere (especially in combination with Coca-Cola :mellow: ).

Somethings were made to be lowbrow only and, like Ramones songs or American Idol, Tater Tots are one such food substance.

I prefere them baked, btw, to deep fried. Kind of the diet version, and the way mom always made them (the get quite as crisp as the deep fried types). Tonic's are a little much.

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I adore tots. And there's a recipe for them in Happy in the Kitchen that I'm going to try as soon as I get my hands on some gelatin; it melts during the frying and so you don't just have a crispy outside, it gets crispy through the inside as well. Or so I hear. Because I haven't tried it yet.

Anyway, tots rock. I could eat a pail of 'em. Have, too, at Bourbon.

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I'm not a hater. I even make them for the kids occasionally (or their organic counterpart, "Spud Puppies"). But they aren't a nostalgia food for me at all.

That website Anna Blume linked to left me speechless, and not just for the heinous tot recipe.

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Tots for Tots. What's the problem?
But, but...Cream of Mushroom soup on tater tots? I am gagging just thinking about it.
And having kids do all the housework and cooking is a time tested tradition too!
I need to get myself about 15 more. :mellow: My house will be spotless!
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Somethings were made to be lowbrow only and, like Ramones songs or American Idol, Tater Tots are one such food substance.
You've just named the three pillars of the Xochitl/Azami household. :mellow:
I prefere them baked, btw, to deep fried. Kind of the diet version, and the way mom always made them (the get quite as crisp as the deep fried types). Tonic's are a little much.
Agreed. Tonic's tots are good, but I can't eat more than a couple without feeling oversalted and overgreased. Not the feeling I want on beer, burgers, and tots Thursday in front of the telly. And they have to be generously sprinkled with Old Bay.
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A potato "Crochhe" could be considered a tater tot?

Tots could be good or bad..depends on; how you define them, who made them, where you eat them, and how hungry you are.

:mellow:

Ore Ida needs to stop messing with them and leave the original recipe ALONE. those onion tots are gross. give me a traditional tot- sprinkle on a little Season All Season Salt, and eeeenjoy with a grilled cheese and tomato soup. given tonight's weather- we may forego beef adobo i planned for tomorrow night and hit the tot trail in front of the tv! lol

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A potato "Crochhe" could be considered a tater tot?Tots could be good or bad..depends on; how you define them, who made them, where you eat them, and how hungry you are.
as could Potatoes Croquette, Macaire or Robert.

Any who snub frozen fried variations of potatoes are made of shinier steel than most. Mr. Birdseye won't be offended. Left alone with their haughty hamburgers and ketchup they would eat plenty.

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Ore Ida needs to stop messing with them and leave the original recipe ALONE. those onion tots are gross. give me a traditional tot- sprinkle on a little Season All Season Salt, and eeeenjoy with a grilled cheese and tomato soup. given tonight's weather- we may forego beef adobo i planned for tomorrow night and hit the tot trail in front of the tv! lol

I guess it is a matter of personal taste. I loved the tater tots wtih onion, but can't find them anymore. My wife even commented on it the last time I brought home a bag of tater tots for the freezer. She preferred the onion ones too. As to baked vs deep fried, I always bake them at home, but love them deep fried if they have been properly drained. They are crisper and take less time to cook. Of course I don't do any deep frying at home, just too much trouble and mess. (Except when I'm making fried chicken, then the trouble is worth it.)

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I too love tots and am dumbfounded when i hear that there are people who don't like them, just as i am when i hear there are people who genuinely dislike chocolate or pizza.

I also love shredded hashbrowns and patties (but not the cubed hashbrowns, which are so clearly inferior to the other kinds they shouldn't be allowed to share the same name ) and think tonic's are like the platonic ideal of tots.

On a separate but related note, has anyone here tried the mccain smiles? the shape weirds me out a little, but man are those good!

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On a separate but related note, has anyone here tried the mccain smiles? the shape weirds me out a little, but man are those good!

They serve them at Generous George's on Duke St. and my 2 year old will do anything to get them. We use them as bribery for her to eat a small garden salad by herself! I have certainly snuck a few off her plate and while I can't say I really dislike them (they are FRIED POTATO product-how bad can they really be?), I doubt that I would purchase them at the store for home consumption. Maybe it is the smile that creeps me out a bit? :mellow:

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The Quarry House Tavern in SS serves up tater tots. People (whoever they are) rave over them. I tried them once, just to see what the fuss was about (no....never had them before and I grew up in the 70s). I can see how they'd be strangely addictive, but only when drunk and severely hungry. After eating about 3/4 of them, I wanted to puke. Oh wait ... maybe that was all the Guinness I had before that.

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Sounds like tater tots could be the next trend. (I love tater tots!) Chefs take the Humble Tater Tot to the Next Level

Once a popular food earns its retro cachet these days, the fine dining crowd can't be far behind. Don't believe it? Michel Richard — the great chef at Citronelle in Washington — has five little words to shake your soul: "Tater Tot foie gras ravioli!" the chef exclaims by telephone. "I make the Tater Tot mixture, fill it with foie gras and then sauté it until it crisps. They're wonderful."
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Tater Tots and Bugles have been the two official snack foods of Movie Night at Dave's since '92.

The ol' irontally: Onion tots -> thumbs down. Generic tots, store-brand tots, fancy-ass Cascadian Farm tots -> thumbs down. McD's hash browns -> thumbs up. Bourbon's fried tots -> big thumbs up. That is all, citizens...carry on.

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Oh good, I'm not the only person who was traumatized by school cafeteria tater tots. I was starting to wonder.

I used to hate tater tots. Then I liked them a bunch, on snowy days and out of stainless steel mixing bowls especially. Hate 'em now... I used to hate mayo, then I liked it alright. Now I don't like mayo so much. Used to hate avacados. Now they're delicious. Used to love people, then I ate 'em, and that was it. Hate people...

Don't give up. You might like tater tots one day.

Right now, I'm into tater coins for gambling.

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Mmm. Tater tots (baked -- I've never even thought of frying them until I read this thread!!!) with ketchup. And toaster hash browns, plain. Then again, Tripewriter thinks that I'm funny because when my stomach hurts or I'm nauseated (it happens mostly on road trips...damn migraines), greasy potatoes fix me. The instacure for my carsickness is McDonald's hash browns or their fries (hot, of course). Can't think of anything else that soothes the tummy quite like it...

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Today's show on *Splendid Table* (March 15) includes brief section on the history of the tater tot. So short that by the time I logged in and searched for this topic, it was over.

Nonetheless, the recipe from *Happy in the Kitchen* was plugged by LRK at the very end.

[hit backspace twice] I heard the show too. They talked about how the tater tot has been repopularized by its mention in Napolean Dynamite, and its invention by the brothers who started OreIda way back when. It used to be cattlefeed until they came along and started trying to develop a frozen french fry.

I like that show.

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20 hours ago, Pool Boy said:

I love tater tots.

You're not alone (anyone remember the early Glee episode about tater tots?)!! For a while tater tots were prominently featured on the menus of several of our favorite food trucks. I couldn't resist and they were good but I got tired of paying "gourmet parking lot" prices and bought a bag of frozen tots instead. Cheap AND delicious! And easy enough to eat yourself sick such that I haven't been tempted by the tots in years...

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