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Country pie (meatloaf+rice+cheese

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Has anyone had "Country Pie" like this:

http://www.tasteofhome.com/Recipes/Co...

My mother makes it, and I think it's absolutely awful. What's more, her most recent versions are low-fat, low-salt with the leanest ground beef, low-fat cheese, salt-free tomato sauce, and brown rice.

I've been meaning to "reinvent" this dish. It seems like meatloaf with tomato rice and cheese could be ok. Any suggestions to make sure it's successful?

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  1. Ugh. Looks like something my mom would have gotten excited about when we were growing up. Strong on meat, starch, and salt, but little flavor. O.K., assuming you don't want to lose too much of the original idea (though I sure would want to!):

    Switch the pepper to red bell and saute it along with the onion first.
    Add red pepper flakes and fennel seed to the meat crust.
    Increase the oregano in the meat to 1 teaspoon.
    Reduce the salt in the meat to 1 teaspoon.
    Change the cheese to a pizza-type combo, like provolone, mozzarella, and parmesan.
    Add some spinach to the rice filling.

    If you do ALL of these things it might become marginally edible! ;-)