7-Layer Casserole (1950s) ★★★

Hooray, a casserole!
Actually, I really love casseroles. They are one of my favourite foods - easy to make, and taste great! This one is also awesome because there are no canned soups (sorry, just not a fan!).

Original Recipe:

7-Layer Casserole

Talk about your one-dish meals! Here's one with no pre-cooking. Just put in the layers, pop it in the oven, and get set for some real raves from your family!

Start heating oven to moderate (350F.). Place these ingredients in layers in a 2-qt. baking dish with a tight-fitting lid:

1. 1 cup rice, uncooked
2. 1 cup canned whole kernel corn, drained
3. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour 1 8-oz. can HUNT'S TOMATO SAUCE and 1/2 can water over first two layers
4. 1/2 cup each finely chopped onion and green pepper
5. 3/4 lb. uncooked ground beef, seasoned with salt and pepper
6. Pour second can HUNT'S TOMATO SAUCE and 1/4 can water over all
7. Cover meat with 4 strips bacon, cut in half

Cover dish and bake at 350F. for 1 hour. Uncover and bake about 30 minutes longer. Makes 4 - 6 servings.

There's just no end to the tempting casseroles you can make with HUNT'S TOMATO SAUCE. It's particularly nice for leftovers. A little of this, a little of that, and HUNT'S TOMATO SAUCE - and a delicious dinner is on your table! Let your imagination be your guide...when Hunt's in the kitchen to help!

The Verdict:

Mr. Man thought this was weird. I thought it was okay. The flavours were nice together and it was ridiculously easy to make. I love a one-dish meal that has carbs, protein, and veggies all together. It's pretty economical. Oh, and I used short grain brown rice because it was what I had on hand and it was cooked to perfection!
However, using uncooked ground beef and bacon made it really greasy. I was quite concerned that there was no grease floating on top - meaning the rice and veggies absorbed all of that. Ewwww....Also, the bacon didn't get any direct heat, so it was all gummy, even though it was cooked through. I really liked the recipe though, so I made some modifications, which are below. I give it 3 stars as is, but it's probably worth 4 if modified.

Modernized Recipe:

(Adapted from 21 Ways to Serve Hamburger, found at Shelf Life Taste Test)

16 ounces TOMATO SAUCE
6 ounces WATER
1 cup RICE, uncooked
1 cup CORN (I used frozen)
1/2 cup ONION, diced
1/2 cup GREEN PEPPER, diced
3/4 pound GROUND BEEF, cooked and drained
4 pieces BACON
SALT, to taste
PEPPER, to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
2. In a 9x13 pan, layer the rice, corn (salt and pepper to taste), 8 ounces of tomato sauce, 4 ounces of water, onion, green pepper, ground beef (salt and pepper to taste), remainder of tomato sauce and water, and bacon. Cover with aluminium foil.
3. Bake for 1 hour, then uncover and bake for another 30 minutes. Turn the oven to broil to crisp the bacon on top, watching carefully not to burn it (alternatively, try pre-cooking the bacon and just crumbling on top).
4. Let cool slightly and serve.

Anje graduated with a Honours Bachelors degree in History with a minor in Museum Studies. She currently lives and works in Japan's least populous prefecture as an assistant English teacher.