Chris' Recipes

Bon Appetite!

French Green Beans with Artichoke Casserole

Written By: Chris - Jan• 18•14

I love fresh green beans and I pick them up at Costco in two pound packages when they are available.  The disadvantage is it is two whole pounds so we need to eat them pretty quickly before they spoil.  Green beans are a tasty low-calorie vegetable loaded with fiber and a wide array of nutrients, such as vitamins A and C.  They also provide some calcium, potassium and folate.  They happen to be one of the vegetables Bill really enjoys, so I keep trying to come up with a variety of ways to prepare them.  I was rummaging around my pantry and thought they might be nice mixed with artichokes.  I Googled a bit and saw a lot of green bean casserole dishes that were similar to the traditional dish served at many Holiday tables and thought that I could come up with something!  I grabbed some ideas and built my recipe from items that I had on hand in my fridge and pantry.  It’s good!  Give it a try!

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Ingredients:

1 lb. French Green Beans, trimmed and cut
1 Onion, chopped
1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 Tablespoons Butter, divided
3 Tablespoons Flour
2 Garlic Cloves, pressed
1/2 Cups Milk, skim
1/2 Cup Half & Half, I used fat free
1 Tablespoon Better Than Bouillon Vegetable
1 14 ounce can Artichoke Hearts, in water, drained and chopped
1 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper, optional
1-2 Tablespoons Parmesan Cheese, grated
2 Cups Panko Crumbs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

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Wash the beans and snap or cut off the tough ends.  In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook green beans until tender, about five minutes.  Drain, and set aside.

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Meanwhile, drain and chop the artichokes.  Saute the onion over medium heat in large skillet in the oil.  Once the onions become soft and start to become translucent, add the garlic and cook for another couple of minutes.  Season lightly with the bouillon and salt & pepper.  

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Push the onion to the sides and melt half the butter in the center.  Add the flour and stir, mixing it into the onions.  Cook over medium-low heat for five minutes to remove the raw taste stirring constantly.

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Whisk in the milk and cream, stirring constantly over medium heat to avoid any lumps.

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Reduce to a simmer and cook until sauce has thickened.  Stir in the Cayenne pepper (if desired) and adjust the seasoning with salt & pepper.

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Spray a two quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and layer it with the green beans.  Next, add the chopped artichokes and spread evenly.

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Pour over the onion mixture and spread evenly before grating a couple tablespoons of fresh Parmesan cheese.  Melt the remaining butter and toss it with the Panko breadcrumbs before putting them on top of the green bean mixture in an even layer.

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Bake until crumbs are golden brown and the sauce is bubbling, about 30 minutes.

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We enjoyed this casserole along side of a simple Turkey Tenderloin and paired it with a delicious 2005 Pine Ridge Carneros Merlot from Napa Valley!

Enjoy!
Cheers!
~Chris

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