Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Pin-It Tuesday: Tater Casserole

I have always wanted to make a breakfast casserole but never had a large enough group to make it for. Then Halloween came along and I decided that I would make the casserole so we would have something to eat the next morning and maybe cure a few hangovers.

There are so many different casseroles out there but I wanted one with meat, potatoes and cheese and if there were eggs in it too, a bonus. And then I stumbled across a few on Pinterest (GroupRecipes.com and the chef is Jennanetz of Marion, IA & one from Yummly.com). I decided to combine these and make my own variation.

Ground breakfast turkey
You need to start by browning off your choice of meat. I chose a pound of ground turkey breakfast sausage - slightly healthier and I just like turkey. I drained off all the fat and let it cool. I sprayed a 9X13 with non-stick spray to start and preheated the oven to 375.

Tater Tots

You take the frozen tater tots and lay them flat across the bottom of the pan. I didn't have any veggies in the house to add to the mix, so I just started mixing up the eggs (but this is where you could add peppers, onions, mushrooms, etc). I whisked heavy cream and three Laughing Cow light Swiss cheese triangles together until mostly smooth. Then I used nine eggs (ten seemed like too many and eight seemed too few!), paprika, onion powder, salt, pepper and garlic powder. I stirred in some shredded cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese into the eggs.

Then I poured all that mixture over the tater tots. This is when I realized I never added the meat crumbles onto the top of the tater tots and had to sprinkle them on last. I was hoping that this wouldn't over cook the meat (as it was already browned), so I just stirred up the whole casserole in the pan to mix everything throughout and left it at that. So much for spraying the pan first :(

Cheese & Egg mixture
It baked for about 45 minutes and then I checked it and it wasn't bubbling in the middle yet. (The last thing I wanted to do is give my friends runny eggs after a night of drinking.) I gave it another 10 minutes and even used the broiler to get the top a little browned.
Tater Casserole!

I let it cool and realized I destroyed the kitchen with dishes and had to clean up. Does anyone else find dishes therapeutic after a job well done? I don't mind dishes and it reminds me of where I started and what came from all that work! Elbow grease?
Dishes Time!
I covered the pan with foil and headed to my friend's house. We put it in their fridge and the next morning, it was welcomed by everyone as we just warmed it up in the microwave one piece as a time and cured everyone's hunger and hangovers :) 

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