I am a side dish whore. At 8 years old, I should have already known I was destined for vegetarianism at the very least. At Thanksgiving, it was never the turkey that motivated me to drag my behind over to Meemaw and Papa's to endure 5 long hours of cheek pinching, wine-induced sing-a-longs and bad old people breath. It was the side dishes. Macaroni and Cheese and Sweet Potatoes put up a great fight, but Green Bean Casserole will always have my heart. My mom's was the most ultimate food-coma inducing comfort filled version ever. It didn't just stick to your ribs, it stuck to your heart [shed a small tear drop here following this sickeningly tender moment . Ok... that's enough. Just go buy some green beans.]
- 1 1/2 lbs Ready To Go Fresh Green Beans (recipe follows)
- 1 cup Vegan French Friend Onions
- 6 TBSP Vegan Margarine
- 6 TBSP Flour
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- Fresh Cracked Pepper, to taste
- 1 1/4 cup Imagine Foods Creamy Portobello Soup
- 1/4 cup MimicCreme
- 1/2 TBSP White Miso Paste
- 2 1/2 TBSP Corn Starch mixed with 3 TBSP Cold Water
- 1/4 cup Shallot, diced
- 1/2 bulb Fresh Fennel, diced
- 1 cup Crimini Mushrooms, chopped
- 2 TBSP Vegetable or Canola Oil
- 2 tsp Fresh Garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp each of Dried Sage, Marjoram and Thyme
First, make sure your beans are trimmed and ready to go. Place 3 quarts of water in a large sauce pot, and bring to a boil.
Get a large bowl with ice water ready. Keep it in the freezer so it stays chilled. Add 1 1/2 TBSP Kosher salt and the green beans to the boiling water. Cover and cook for about 6 minutes or until crisp-tender and still bright green. Keep an eye on the beans just in case they start to brown before the 6 minutes is up.
Drain beans in a colander, then plunge into the ice water. Drain well, then place a double layer of paper towels in single layer to dry, and top with a double layer of towels.
Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Sauté garlic and shallots for 30 seconds, then add fennel, mushrooms, herbs and spices. Sauté until slightly softened. Remove the pan from heat, and set aside.
Using a whisk, in a very large sauce pan, melt the Earth Balance over medium-high heat. And flour, 1/2 tsp of salt and pepper, and whisk together. Add the miso paste, and blend in well. Pour Creamy Mushroom Soup and MimicCreme in gradually while constantly stirring. Continue stirring until the mixture begins to boil and thickens.
Add the green beans to the rest of the sautéed vegetables and about half of your French fried onions to the sauce pan, and stir well.
Pour that mixture into a casserole dish or pan and top with remaining French fried onions. Bake in oven at about 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, until the onions begin to brown. Remove. Eat. Let it cool if you're more patient than I am. Enjoy.