Green bean casserole is quite a staple during Thanksgiving and Christmas in the US. But here in the UK most people have never heard of such a dish, I struggled to even find the standard French’s fried onions. In the end I opted for a bag of fried onions we found in the Indian food section of the supermarket, which it turns out were the exact same thing.
Growing up I had only ever had it made with canned soup, but ever since I started cooking healthier I have avoided using canned soup as much as possible. So that posed a challenge for me, because the reason we use canned is because of the convenience of it. There is a lot to do on Christmas and the last thing we need is to add one more time consuming dish. So I had to come up with something that wasn’t more fuss then it was worth and I am pleased to say that I did it. This was incredibly easy to make and it took up less time in the oven, which on a day like Christmas is a huge plus.
Now if you are feeling very adventurous I am sure you could make the fried onions from scratch but for me it isn’t worth the extra time.
Green Bean Casserole
1 tsp salt
500g (1lbs) frozen or fresh green beans (par-boiled), trimmed and halved
2 Tbsp olive oil
340g (12oz) mushrooms, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 c. vegetable broth
4 Tbsp cornstarch
1 c. cream
2 c. fried onions
Bring a gallon of water and 1 teaspoon of salt to a boil in a saucepan. Add the beans and blanch for 5 minutes. Drain in a colander and immediately plunge the beans into a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain and set aside in a 9inch pan.
Heat oil a skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to give up some of their liquid, approximately 4 to 5 minutes.
In a medium saucepan heat 1 Tbsp of oil and add the garlic, onions, nutmeg, salt and pepper; cook until the onions are transparent. Add the mushrooms.
Decrease the heat to medium-low and add the cornstarch to the cream and then add to the mushroom mixture. Cook until the mixture thickens, stirring occasionally, approximately 6 to 8 minutes.
Remove from the heat and stir in 1/2 cup of the onions and add to the green beans. Top with the remaining onions.
Place into 180 C (350 F) pre-heated oven the oven and bake until bubbly, approximately 15 minutes. Remove and serve immediately.