The HOLLAdays are here! Which means plenty of vintage recipes from our mommas and grandmommas, written in cursive on grease-stained old-school recipe cards. I’ve given the classic green bean casserole a facelift. No more cream-of-something soup. No more onion-flavored fried flour from a can. We’ve got fresh beans. Herbs abounding. Crispy onion strings. It’s just perfect.
Saute some garlic, onion, and mushrooms, then whisk in some flour to make a roux. Slowly add half-and-half for your rich, creamy sauce. Mix in some parmesan for added depth. This in itself is wonderful. Oh but then you add thyme. Blow your mind.
Pour your creamy mushroom sauce over freshly-blanched green beans and mushrooms, then bake for about an hour.
This is where frying your turkey comes in handy: your oven is free for the casserole and you have a pot full of hot oil just begging to fry up some salty, crispy, little onion strings.
The green beans come out tender, the mushrooms rich and juicy, all in a creamy thyme-packed sauce topped with crisp little nuggets of joy. Happy Holidays.
- 8 cups fresh green beans washed and ends trimmed (about 2 1/2 pounds)
- 1 pound mushrooms washed and stems discarded, divided
- 2 T butter
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 large yellow onion divided
- 2 T flour
- 3 1/2 c half-and-half
- 1 t salt
- 1 t pepper
- 1 T fresh thyme
- 1/3 c shredded parmesan cheese
- 4 c buttermilk
- 4 c flour
- 1 T salt
- 1/2 T garlic powder
- 1/2 T paprika
Blanch green beans by boiling in a large pot of water for about 3-4 minutes, then plunging in a bowl of ice water.
Spray 9x13 pan with oil to grease. Cut 3/4 of the mushrooms into quarters, and the remaining mushrooms dice finely. Place green beans and the quartered mushrooms into 9x13 pan.
Slice 3/4 of the onion into thin strips. Place buttermilk in 8x8 pan. Add onion strips to buttermilk, cover, and let sit in refrigerator to soften. Mince remaining 1/4 onion finely.
Melt butter in pot. Add garlic, remaining 1/4 of the onion, and the finely-diced mushrooms. Saute about 10 minutes, or until mushrooms have released their juices.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Whisk in 2 T flour until roux (paste) has formed. Continue to cook to develop flavor about 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in half-and-half about 1/2 c at a time until you have a thickened sauce. Add salt, pepper, fresh thyme, and parmesan cheese.
Pour sauce over green beans and mushrooms in 9x13 pan, cover with foil, and bake 45 minutes. Remove foil for remaining 15 minutes of baking time. Bake until bubbly and green beans are tender.
For onion strings, preheat your oil to 375 degrees.
Mix flour, salt, paprika, and garlic powder in large bowl. Dredge onion strings in flour mixture. Fry dredged onion strings in hot oil (they should immediately begin to sizzle when you place them in your hot oil. If not, your oil is not hot enough) small batches at a time. Let drain on paper towel-lined plate. Season with salt if desired. Top casserole with onion strings and serve immediately.