As any good Minnesotan, I know my way around a hot dish. The simple recipe: meat, veggies, starch and a condensed soup baked at 350 degrees until bubbly was one of the first I mastered by myself. They’re a quintessential piece of the Midwestern household and true to Midwestern form, they’re basic. They’re not fancy, the ingredients are not glamorous, and whether it be because they induce memories of church potlucks or clumps of bland, unhealthy, canned mystery ingredients, they have a terrible reputation.
However, putting the Fargo stereotypes aside, with the right ingredients, hot dishes can be haute.
They are the hearty answer to days like today, when the thermometer reads -13 degrees and our back door has a layer of frost on the inside (I know, we should get that looked at). Turning on the oven is an automatic coping mechanism and today resulted in a loaded nacho turkey tater tot hautedish. The turkey and fresh ingredients makes it somewhat healthy, but between the cheese, heat and tater tots, taste was not harmed in the making of this meal.