Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Dear, Oh Dear: Green Bean Casserole, AT LAST!

Well, I suppose even bloggers need a vacation?

Anyways, about that green bean casserole...

After Thanksgiving, I thought, I don't need to write down what I did, I'll put it on my blog... Well, that didn't happen, so when my mother-in-law requested it for Christmas dinner, I was a little concerned. Would  I be able to recreate it, sans- recipe? The answer is YES!

So, here you go:

Green Bean Casserole with Shitake Mushrooms and "Tobacco" Onion Topping

2 lbs green beans, trimmed and cut into 1" pieces
1 1/2 cups shitake mushrooms, chopped
1/2 stick butter
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 large shallots, thinly sliced (about a cup)
4 cloves garlic, smashed
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup water
2 tsp dried sage, crumbled
1/2 cup parmesan
2 oz cream cheese
kosher salt and black pepper

For the "Tobacco" Onion Topping:
"Tobacco" Onions are a mixture of red and white (or yellow) onions, dredged in flour and fried. The resulting topping looks like dried tobacco leaves.
1 red onion, sliced into rings
1 yellow or white onion, sliced into rings
1/2 c flour
2 tsp paprika
kosher salt and black pepper
2 tbs butter
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Heat butter and oil in a large skillet or stockpot (with cover.) Cook shallots and garlic with 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper, stirring occasionally, until pale golden, about 5 mins. Add wine and boil until reduced by half. Add cream, water, sage,1/4tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper and bring just to a boil, stirring constantly. Add green beans and mushrooms. Simmer, tightly covered, until beans are tender, 20-30 minutes. Stir in parmesan and cream cheese until melted.
While beans are cooking, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat oil and butter for onions in a small skillet.
In a shallow bowl, combine flour, paprika, salt and pepper. Dredge onion rings in flour mixture. Cook onion rings in small batches, until golden brown and crunchy. Allow to rest on paper towels.
When beans are tender, pour them (and sauce) into a large casserole dish. Top with fried onions. Bake 10-15 minutes, or until beans are bubbly.
Can be made one day ahead and refrigerated. If doing so, do not put onions on top until ready to reheat. Will take 25-30 minutes to heat through.

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