There's usually no middle ground when it comes to green bean casserole-either you love it, or you hate it. Chances are, if someone in your family (usually a crazy aunt) insists on making this dish, they also insist you eat it. But green bean casserole does not (and should not) mean processed soup from a can and greasy fried onions. Sure, it takes a little bit more effort, but going the extra mile will always result in delicious results.
1 1/2 # Green Beans
1 Yellow Onion, peeled and chopped
1/2 # White Mushrooms, sliced
5 slices Bacon, Cooked and Chopped
1 1/2 C. Milk
3 T. Flour
3 T. Butter
1/2 C. Heavy Cream
1 t. Salt
1/2 t. Pepper
1/2 t. Thyme
1 T. Minced Garlic
1/2 C. Italian Bread crumbs
3 T. Grated Parmesan Cheese
**Optional: 1-2 T. Sherry
1. In a heavily salted pot of boiling water, blanch cleaned green beans for 2-3 minutes. Remove from hot water and shock them in a bowl of cold ice water. Once cool, remove from water and set aside.
2. Saute bacon & onion until translucent. Add mushroom & Garlic & saute until soft. If there is not enough fat in the pan, add about 1 T of butter. Remove from pan & combine with green beans.
3. In the same pan add remaining butter & flour. Stir to cook the flour for about a minute, but do not allow the flour to brown. Add milk and bring to a boil. Stir to thicken. Add salt, pepper, and thyme. Add cream and whisk to blend.
Add about 1 T. of Sherry to the cream sauce before proceeding to next step.
3. Pour sauce over green bean mixture and season to taste. Place in baking dish top casserole with seasoned bread crumbs and drizzle with olive oil. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.