Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thanksgiving Green Bean Casserole

One of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes is green bean casserole. I made this last year and it was a hit, so I think it deserves and encore. This year I am modifying the recipe a bit because although it tasted great, it was way too labor intensive. Last year I made EVERYTHING from scratch- the fried onion strings, the cream of mushroom soup, trimmed the fresh green beans... it was great but what a mission. This year I am taking a few shortcuts. Instead of making the onion strings, I am using French's onions. And instead of trimming and chopping fresh green beans, I will use frozen pre-cut beans. I am still making the cream of mushroom since I can't bring myself to use condensed soup- it gives me migraines and that's the last thing I want on thanksgiving.

3 bags frozen green beans ( I prefer french cut, but I couldn't find them this year)
1 large can of French's onion strings
3 tbsp. flour
2 tbsp. butter
1 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
2 cups sliced button mushrooms
1 pinch nutmeg
2 cups milk
1/3 cup heavy cream
3 tbsp. chopped fresh chives
1 dash of garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste

The first thing I do is slice all of the mushrooms and saute them in butter. I let all of the liquid render from this and set the pan aside once thoroughly cooked through. Next I make a roux with butter and flour and add the milk and cream. I whisk it well to avoid clumps and add salt, pepper, garlic powder and nutmeg and allow the mix to thicken. Next I add the mushrooms and liquid to the pot. I let this cook down until its thick. If I were eating this as a soup alone, I would skip this part but the last thing anyone wants is a watery green bean casserole! While all of this going on, put a pot with water to boil and cook the green beans for about 3 minutes. Drain them well and set aside. Once the mushroom soup has cooked down, take a casserole dish and begin spooning the mushroom soup, green beans and French's onions. Mix well and top with more onions. Bake until everything is bubbling and hot for about 25 minutes on 350 degrees.I will post pictures of this version after I make it , but here is what it looked like last year:

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