MNichols, MT4Runner, Bighorn, and Caverdan:
Thanks for the great DO recipes. Hot Dish is a thing in and of itself and has a specific definition for those in the frozen north. I'm fishing for these traditional meals that can be or have been optimized for DO river cooking. It may just be that we don't have many Dakotans or Minnesotans here on the buzz
The history of the hotdish goes back to when "budget-minded farm wives needed to feed their own families, as well as congregations in the basements of the first Minnesota churches." According to Howard Mohr, author of How to Talk Minnesotan, "A traditional main course, hotdish is cooked and served hot in a single baking dish and commonly appears at family reunions and church suppers." The most typical meat for many years has been ground beef, and cream of mushroom remains the favorite canned soup. In years past, a pasta was the most frequently used starch, but tater tots and local wild rice have become very popular as well.
Hotdishes are filling, convenient, and easy to make. They are well-suited for family reunions, funerals, church suppers, and covered dish dinners or potlucks where they may be paired with potato salad, coleslaw, Jello salads, Snickers salad, and pan-baked desserts known as bars.
Typical ingredients in hotdish are potatoes or pasta, ground beef, green beans, and corn, with canned soup added as a binder, flavoring and sauce. Potatoes may be in the form of tater tots, hash browns, potato chips, or shoe string potatoes. The dish is usually seasoned lightly with salt and pepper, and it may be eaten with ketchup as a condiment. Another popular hotdish is the tuna hotdish, made with macaroni or egg noodles, canned tuna, peas, and mushroom soup. Also common is a dish known as goulash, though it bears no resemblance to the familiar Hungarian goulash. Minnesota goulash is usually made with ground beef, macaroni, canned tomatoes, and perhaps a can of creamed corn.
Cream of mushroom soup is so ubiquitous in hotdish that it is often referred to in such recipes as “Lutheran Binder,” referring to hotdish's position as a staple of Lutheran church cookbooks. The soup is considered a defining ingredient by some commentators.
Here's a recipe for Crescent Roll Topped Hot Dish
2 pounds hamburger
1 large onion, chopped
1 (15 oz) can of tomato sauce
1 small can mushrooms
1 (8 oz.) carton sour cream
1 1/2 cups shredded Mozarella cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
8 oz. tube crescent rolls
Oregano & Basil to taste
Brown hamburger and onion. Drain. Mix with tomato sauce and mushrooms. Spread in 9 x 13 pan or casserole dish. Spread cheeses over meat mix.
Lay out crescent rolls and spread with sour cream. Sprinkle with Oregano and Basil. Roll and place on top of cheese.
Bake in pre-heated 350 degree oven for 35 minutes or until crescent rolls are brown and done. Serves 8
Chicken and Potato Casserole
Here is a Minnesota Hot Dish recipe that seems to have it all: dried potatoes, chicken, cream of mushroom soup and peas! If you want to be daring, add the pimento. What could be more Minnesotan?
1 package Dehydrated Scalloped Idaho Potatoes
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1 cup diced, cooked chicken
1 cup cooked peas
1/4 cup chopped pimento (optional)
Preheat oven to 400° F
2.Prepare potatoes according to package directions.
Stir in soup.
Gently mix in chicken, peas and pimentos. Bake in 2-quart casserole uncovered for 45 minutes or until potatoes are tender.