Sunday, December 9, 2012

Green Bean Casserole - Alton Brown Style


I don't think Green Bean Casserole can ever really be considered "healthy". If you're gonna do it right, that is. Even if you use non-fat milk or some other milk alternative...it just won't be the same without those crispy French's French Fried Onions. I think I saw a low-carb or low-fat version at the market, but didn't pick them up. It seems that a lot of those altered products make up for the "low-this" and "non-that" by adding more sugar or sodium to boost the flavor. I once tried making the fried onions myself...in the oven. It didn't cut it. At all (sorry Alton).

Alton Brown has his Best Ever Green Bean Casserole recipe that is very very good. What I like about it most is that it doesn't use canned soup. You have fresh mushrooms, half and half, broth and other wonderful ingredients....without the MSG. Ya I know...those fried onions are loaded with MSG...but I just can't make this dish without them...so once in a while...I turn a blind eye. (a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.)

For the past several years, I've been making Alton's Green Bean Casserole. It only takes a little more time than the "original" Campbell's Soup version. You can do it ahead of time and just stick it in the fridge (before adding the fried onions) until you're ready to cook it. If you've found that the sauce has thickened more than you like, just add a little broth or half and half and you're ready to go.

I know that most people either hate it or love it....but Green Bean Casserole has been a favorite of mine since I was a child and I can't imagine a holiday meal with out.

Green Bean Casserole - without the canned soup
Printable Version

1 lb fresh green beans, cut into 2" pieces, cooked
2 TB butter
12 oz mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
2 TB flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup half and half
1 1/2 cups French's French Fried Onions (or more if desired)

Preheat oven to 375' F.

In a large 12" cast iron skillet (or other oven safe skillet) melt the butter over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms start giving up some of their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and nutmeg and continue cooking for another minute or so.


Add the flour, stir to combine and continue to cook for a minute. Stir in the broth and continue to cook for a minute.

Lower the heat to medium-low and pour in the half and half.


Cook for about 6 - 8 minutes, stirring occasionally until the mixture thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the green beans. (this is the point where I let it cool a little and place in the fridge until I'm ready to continue).

Note: If you put this dish in the fridge, the sauce may have thickened even more while sitting. If that's the case, just add a little (1/4 cup?) of broth until you have the desired consistency again.

Stir in 1/2 cup of French Fried Onions. Sprinkle the remaining onions on top.


Place in the oven and cook for about 20 minutes, until bubbly and the onions have browned a bit. 

And there you have it. Easy peasy. Better than ever.  



a vintage green bean casserole....just updated a little.

#CooksNetwork

3 comments:

  1. Green bean casserole is one of those things that foodies have to eat in a dark closet. I mean, it's hated on so much-- but, I won't lie. I like it. I really do. At least you didn't do the canned soup thang, but I agree with you. The fried onions are da bomb with this. Yum.

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  2. Great recipe and I love that you made it in a cast iron skillet. I really need to use mine more often.

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  3. I've actually never had green bean casserole :) I love the idea of it, so I definitely need to give it a shot.

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