Many of us grew up enjoying a green bean casserole that featured canned, condensed cream of mushroom soup as well as fried onions from a jar. Tasty and comforting in many ways, but why not make it from scratch? The results have minimally processed ingredients and much less sodium (though you can't exactly call this a healthy recipe). Crispy fried shallots come together in no time for a decadent topping that shouldn't be missed! This is the new version you should be bringing to holiday dinners for years to come. Start a new tradition!
Things You'll Need
2 pounds green beans, trimmed
3 ounces (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter
3 cups thinly sliced shallots (approximately 5 to 6 medium), divided
1 pound sliced button or baby bella mushrooms
3/4 cup all-purpose flour, divided
1 1/2 cups chicken stock, homemade or low sodium
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
Canola, vegetable or grapeseed oil for frying
Optional: 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
Step 1: Gather Your Ingredients
The ingredients in this recipe are fairly straight forward. You can save time by purchasing green beans that have already been trimmed (otherwise, I like using kitchen sheers to get the job done). Button mushrooms are the classic choice for green bean casserole, but almost any smaller variety will work. If you've never worked with shallots before, they're like mild onions with a hint of garlic flavor. If you can't find them, yellow onions can be substituted.
Step 2: Blanch the Green Beans
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and set a large bowl of ice water nearby. Cook the green beans until crisp-tender, 5 to 6 minutes, then drain and immediately transfer to the ice bath to halt the cooking process. Once the green beans are cold, drain and set aside.
Step 3: Prepare the Mushroom Sauce
In a large Dutch oven or heavy bottom saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Once melted, add 1/2 cup of the shallots and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until translucent. Add the mushrooms and turn the heat up slightly. Continue cooking for several minutes until the mushrooms have reduced in size and some of the liquid has released and evaporated. Stir in 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons of the flour. A paste will form. Stir for 1 minute, then add the chicken stock and half-and-half. Turn the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil while whisking. Continue whisking until the sauce has thickened, 5 to 6 minutes. Whisk in 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and then remove from the heat.
Step 4: Combine Ingredients and Bake
Add the green beans to the pot and stir to combine the ingredients, then pour everything into a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish. If using, top evenly with the bread crumbs. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the sauce begins bubbling around the sides.
Step 5: Prepare Fried Shallot Topping
While the casserole is baking, prepare the fried shallots. Fill a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan or Dutch oven with a neutral-flavored, high-heat oil (such as vegetable oil), approximately 2 to 3 inches deep. Using a thermometer, bring the oil to approximately 275 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium bowl, place the remaining shallots and separate any rings or half-moons that are still connected. Dredge with the remaining flour, salt and pepper. Working in batches as necessary, add the shallots to the hot oil and fry until crisp and golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to paper towels to drain.
Step 6: Serve Fried Shallots Over Casserole
Spread the fried shallots evenly over the green bean casserole.