My mother used to make this for us kids back in the day, and I have been making it ever since. It is total comfort food for me. My husband is not as fond of it as I am, so I offered to "Mexicanize" it for him! He loved it!
We call it Tator Tot Casserole, and I am sure there are many ways to prepare it, but this is our family's way!
I still like it the traditional way, so next time I get it my way!
What you will need, depending on the size casserole you use, a 9X9 works with about 3/4 lbs of hamburger, for the 9X13 you will need about 1.5 lbs
Hamburger (I use 7%-10%)
1 bag of Tator Tots
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1 can of cheese soup
chopped onion (as much as you like)
1 can of Mexi Corn
Cheddar Cheese shredded
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped (half if you are using the smaller casserole)
Pan spray the bottom of whichever size casserole dish you decide to use
Pat the raw ground beef into the bottom of the casserole, getting all the way around the edges
Spread on the onion and red bell pepper
Put on as many tator tots as you can get to fit, it is like a puzzle
Mix your two cans of soup with 1/2 can of water, each, whisk it well
Pour the soup on top of the casserole
Salt and pepper to taste
Cook at 350 for 40 minutes, remove from oven and spread some cheese on top, put back into oven for a few minutes to melt
**Some folks add green beans and mushrooms, however I am a purist**