This is not the healthiest fare, but when served with a big ol’ salad with low cal dressing, it makes a hearty and yummy part of a balanced meal.   I do want to note, in the interest of full disclosure, Zliten made this all.  I pretty much took pictures.  All you veggies out there, I suppose you could make this sans ground beef, but you might be better off getting some of those soy crumbles that are supposed to be ground beef-like.  However, being omnivorous myself, I haven’t tried it.

Start by browning the thawed ground beef.  We use 96/4 (the leanest stuff you can get) so you pretty much don’t have to drain it.   If you get anything less lean, drain it before you continue.  Then, add 2 small cans of tomato sauce and about 2-3 cups of frozen mixed veggies.  Previously, we used a can of corn, can of carrots, and can of green beans, until we realized that our frozen costco veggies took care of that need and added yummy peas.  Extra credit: you can also add garlic, onions, and rooster sauce at this stage for extra spicing.

This is what you should be looking like now.  In another pot, make your potatoes.  Normally, we go the lazy way and get a package of instant taters, but a friend had just brought over his perishables since he was leaving on a 3 week trip, so we had a bunch of potatoes staring at us with their ever-growing eyes.  Five little ones became this:

Quix’s perfect mashed potatoes – cut up potatoes as desired and throw into water.  Leave the skins on, as mom said, they have all the nutrients (and I think they taste better).  Extra credit: throw in garlic and onions.  Pretty much anything besides cookies are going to have that extra credit direction – btw.  Leave an itty bit of water in and mash ’em up.  Add about a tbsp of low fat ranch and a tsp of light margarine, a handful of blue cheese, dill, rosemary, fresh ground pepper, and stir.  These, however, weren’t made by me, which was fine, they tasted great.  Just don’t know exactly what went into them.  For this dish, you can skip all the flavorings above and just do taters and lube (butter, ranch, or both) because the bottom is so flavorful.

Next, pour your meaty concoction in something you can throw in the oven.  Spread the tater goodness on top of it.

Now, the important part, the cheese.  Sprinkle a thin layer over the top.  Cheddar is the best, but we had Italian blend, anything is ok.  Just keep in mind, fat free cheese sucks at melting well, so you might not use that.  I guess you could skip the cheese, but I don’t suggest it.

Throw it in the oven for about 25 minutes on 350.  Go do something else for a while.  I suggest sometime during this time make yourself a salad to go with it or you’ll want to eat the whole pan of it.  Because shortly, you’re going to pop it out of the over, and it will look like this:

Hey there, beautiful.  My name’s Quix.  Wanna come to my plate for dinner tonight?  Just you, me, and salad.  Om… nom.. nom…

Oooh.  Sorry.  Got caught up there a moment.  So the calorie breakdown on this bad boy is approximately 400 calories per quarter section (which is a good size serving with some sort of side dish, I highly suggest a salad with but I can’t control your whims), and should feed 4 normal humans (somewhere between birdlike eaters and garbage disposals).  Time invested is about 30 mins prep, plus about 30 mins wait/cooling.  Feel free to liberally douse with more rooster sauce if you’re spicy like us.  Enjoy, and thank me later!