This is an old family favorite that I converted to meet our dietary restrictions... YUMMY! I ended up doubling the recipe because my kids used to eat it all several years ago and they eat more now!
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1 lb ground beef or buffalo
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp crushed oregano
1-2 Tblsp minced onion
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I made my own - see below)
1 small pkg tater-tots
Combine the tomato sauce, ground beef, salt, pepper, and oregano and put into a 9x9 baking dish. Cover with minced onion and top with 1 can cream of mushroom soup. Cover top with tater-tots. Bake uncovered at 375 for 45 minutes.
Cream of Mushroom Soup
3 Tblsp butter (Earth Balance soy-free)
1 small onion diced
12-14 baby portabello mushrooms
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp onion salt
1/2 tsp savory
1 tsp basil
salt & pepper
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup cashews (soaked for 30 minutes)
1 Tblsp potato starch
Heat butter, onion and sliced mushrooms in pan and saute for 10 minutes. Add 2 cups of broth, spices and simmer for another 10 minutes or so. While this is cooking, take the cup of cashews and the remaining 1/2 cup broth and puree in blender or food processor until smooth. Add the broth mixture into the blender and pulse a few times. Return to pan and heat to simmer again. Add potato starch and stir to thicken slightly. Adjust spices, salt & pepper as needed.
You won't need all the soup on the casserole - one can of soup is around 15 ounces I think - which would be almost 2 cups???
Note: If making real cream of mushroom soup for eating, I wouldn't add the extra potato starch and would probably add another cup or two of broth to make it more of a liquid soup. I wanted mine thicker to mimic the cream of mushroom soup right out of the can.
After it came out of the oven, I realized that the buffalo shrunk and the soup went around the edges and drowned the tater-tots. I also think I used too much soup, but it was a hit and everyone had seconds! Glad I doubled the recipe!