I just had to write a quick post about this recipe because D. and I just had some for lunch and oh my gosh, it is good! Truly, we were scraping the casserole dish clean.
This is adapted and plagiarized from Alanna’s World’s Best Green Bean Casserole, and I have to say, the name fits. I made up a full recipe to bring to Thanksgiving at the in-laws’ tomorrow, but I set aside this small dish to bake today just for us (and to photograph just for you). Though I can’t say that either my husband or I were fans of green bean casserole in general, we’re now fans of this one.
Warning: This is not a fat-free recipe. I’ve veganized it and taken out some of the butter/margarine, but there’s still Earth Balance margarine in the topping and some fat in the soy creamer. And oh, those fried onions! (Which I accidentally used a whole can of, instead of the half can the recipe called for.) What can I say? You could try it completely fat-free as outlined in the recipe’s notes, but for a special occasion, this isn’t a huge an amount of fat. And the taste is amazing. No one will know it’s vegan!
And, in case this is my last post before the holidays, happy Thanksgiving to those of you who celebrate it. Thanks to Alanna for the recipe, and thanks to all of you readers for your support this year. Your comments and input make blogging fun!
The Best Vegan Green Bean Casserole
- 2 quarts water
- 1 tablespoon table salt
- 1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces or 2 12-ounce packages frozen cut green beans
- 10 ounces mushrooms (I used a combination of regular button mushrooms and shiitake)
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- generous pinch cayenne pepper (had to add it for the New Orleanians)
- Salt to taste
- Fresh pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 3/4 cup vegetable broth (I used Imagine's No-Chicken)
- 1 tablespoon dry sherry (Alanna's brilliant addition)
- 3/4 cup soy creamer or try unsweetened soymilk
Topping (see alternate oil-free topping in Notes)
- 1 1/2 slices whole grain bread
- 1 tablespoon vegan margarine optional, but topping holds together better with it
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/16 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 3- ounce can of French fried onions
Beans: Bring the water to boil in a large pot. While it’s heating, cut up the beans. Add the salt and beans to the boiling water. Cover and cook for 6 minutes. Drain beans in a colander, and then spray for a minute with cold water to stop the cooking. Let them drain in the colander, shaking every now and then to get off all the water.
Sauce: Trim and discard the mushroom stems and chop the mushrooms into pieces. Spray a non-stick pan with canola oil and heat it. Add the mushrooms, garlic, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Cook until mushrooms are very soft and exude their juices. Whisk the flour into the vegetable broth and add to the mushrooms along with the sherry. Simmer, stirring, until mixture thickens. Add the soy creamer and simmer until thick, about 5 to 10 minutes. Adjust the seasonings and stir in the beans.
Topping: Put the bread, margarine, salt, and pepper into a food processor and pulse until crumbly. Pour into a bowl and add the onions. Stir to combine.
To assemble: Put the green beans into an oiled casserole dish and top with the onion mixture. Bake at 425 F for about 15 minutes. If you are not serving this right away, refrigerate the topping separately; bring to room temperature before sprinkling the topping on the casserole and baking for about 20 minutes or until hot throughout.
*Sodium figure is inflated because it includes all the salt in the bean-cooking water, most of which is not actually absorbed by the beans.
You can make this even lighter by replacing the topping with pan-"fried" onions (without oil) and panko, seasoned with black pepper.
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