Tuesday, December 11, 2007

"Hot Dish Heaven - Classic Casseroles from Midwest Kitchens" - Shipwreck Casserole

Date I made this recipe: December 9, 2007

Hot Dish Heaven – Classic Casseroles from Midwest Kitchens by Ann L. Burckhardt
Published by: Minnesota Historical Society Press (http://www.mhspress.org/)
ISBN: 10: 0-87351-568-4
Recipe: Shipwreck Casserole – p. 56-57

Oh.My.God. As if things around the holidays aren’t stressful enough, my favorite grocery store, Byerly’s, just broke my heart the other day. Just broke it into little pieces. You see, they (gasp!) discontinued their line of Byerly’s frozen entrees that contained some of my favorites: Tuna Casserole, Sour Cream Casserole and the ever popular Macaroni, Ground Beef and Sauce Hot Dish.

I know, I know, it’s so hard to believe but trust me, it’s true. It’s all true.

You may wonder what on earth someone like me, who is now a cooking fool, is doing buying frozen entrees but when I was in law school those entrees were survival food. And actually, if truth be told, I’d been buying them for years before that. I mean, what’s not to love about them? I didn’t have to do the shopping or the cooking, they fit nicely in my freezer, and they microwaved in less than 10 minutes. If I was starvin’ like Marvin, the casseroles were there to satisfy immediately, no fuss, no muss, no bother.

And so now here we are with a veritable Hotdish holocaust on our hands. And I am not a happy camper but I suppose life moves on. But I daydream about picket lines, mass hysteria and the eventual return of my entrees. It’s what keeps me going.

Meanwhile, to console myself, I pulled out a relatively new acquisition to my library written by Minnesota author, Ann L. Burckhardt, called Hot Dish Heaven. For those of you who have read my previous blog postings, you know how I feel about the use of the term “hot dish” when it is really a casserole but I’ll spare you another rant and just get on to the recipe.

This is what I love about casseroles: you layer some ingredients, you include a can of soup, throw the whole thing in the oven and forget about it while watching Desperate Housewives or some other show of interest. And by the time the show of interest is done, you have dinner.

According to Ann, nobody really knows where the name “shipwrecked” came from but she suspects it was dubbed that by a cook who needed something to make when life has “shipwrecked” them. Works for me. Some of you may also know this as Busy Day Casserole or Seven-Layer Casserole but whatever you want to call it, it’s very good and rather fun to put together. I like layering and believe me, living in Minnesota in the winter has made me an expert on it—clothing layering, that is!

Shipwreck Casserole – makes 4 to 6 servings

1 medium onion, chopped or thin sliced
2 to 3 medium potatoes, diced, grated, or thin sliced
2 carrots, grated or thin sliced
1 pound regular or lean ground beef or turkey, raw, crumbled
1/3 cup uncooked white or brown rice
1 to 2 ribs celery, sliced
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
Salt and pepper to taste
1 can tomato soup
1 cup water

Heat oven to 350F. (325 for glass casseroles).

Layer the vegetables, meat, rice, and beans in the order given in a 2-quart casserole, seasoning each layer lightly with salt and a dash of pepper. Stir soup and water together and pour over the layered ingredients.

Cover and bake 1 ½ hours. Use a kitchen fork to test vegetables for doneness.

1 comment:

ara133photography said...

I LOOOOOOVE shipwrecked!!! My Mom used to make it when I was growing up :) In fact I just posted a blog entry about it today (a much simpler version however. Funny!! :)