Admit it. You've all had the green bean casserole following the recipe on the label of Campbell's cream of mushroom soup and the can of French's French Fried Onions. Brian's mom Jane, a great cook as long as it came from a can, always made this for Thanksgiving, but instead of canned beans she was fancy - she'd use Bird's Eye Frozen green beans (I think that package also contains the recipe).
Lately, I've read several green bean casserole variations that sound tasty, but they're just missing that certain something - CREAM OF MUSHROOM SOUP! It wouldn't be a true green bean casserole without it.
Here' my new edition of Jane's old classic:
Start with fresh green beans. I bought a pound and a half. Wash the beans, pinch the ends off,then cut into 1 to 1 1/2 inch pieces. Blanch the beans for just a couple of minutes, drain, and drop them in a sink of ice water to stop further cooking.
Set aside, and take a photo of the pretty beans.
Saute a pound of sliced mushrooms. Julia would not approve of my saute method, as she says you should never let your mushrooms overlap in the pan - but I wasn't about to saute this many mushrooms in a single layer - so I just used a huge pan and threw them all in.
Now is when the traditional recipe kicks into gear. Preheat your oven to 375. In a casserole baking dish, empty one can of Campbell's Cream of Mushroom soup (of course you can use "store" brands, but it's a holiday - splurge, go wild, buy the name brand)and stir in 2/3 cup milk; then add 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and I like to squirt in a couple shots of tabasco, or your favorite hot sauce.
Fold in the green beans and the mushrooms, mixing well to coat all the veggies with the soup. Next stir in one half of a large can of French's French Fried Onions (again, store brand will work, but at Rock and Roll Ralph's on Sunset Boulevard, the French's brand were cheaper than the Kroeger brand during the Thanksgiving sale).
Place the casserole, uncovered, in the oven - immediately turn down the temperature to 350. Bake for 30 minutes. Take out of the oven, stir thoroughly and check for hotness. If it isn't quite done, put it back in for a few minutes. When hot, top with the remaining fried onions, and bake uncovered for another 5 to 10 minutes.
Voila - the classic green bean casserole with a new twist.