Question: Can one actually ruin Campbell's Green Bean Casserole?
Answer: Apparently I can.
In my post yesterday, at Easy Gourmet Dinners, I was praising the art of adding small amounts of, shall we say, assertive foods to dishes to add interest without adding calories. Things like Prosciutto, anchovies, Greek olives…
As I was typing | remembered the day I 'ruined' the Green Bean Casserole by adding (gasp) thyme.
In the Midwest, when I was a child (and, perhaps, even now) it was a universal staple at holiday tables.
One could say of a lot of classic food (Cassoulet, for example, or Minestrone) that there are as many recipes as there are cooks.
Not true of GBC (Green Bean Casserole).
There is only one recipe and curses are rained upon the head of any 'so-called fancy cook' (ahem) who dares make a change.
I was entrusted with the task of preparing it at my sister's house for a family gathering (in my honor, as I was visiting from 'Europe'). I sprinkled a bit of thyme into the mix and, maybe, just a touch of basil…. There might have been some garlic… I seem to remember a drop or two of Worcestershire…
It was roundly scorned and, for the most part, untouched.
I ruined dinner with my 'foreign ways'.
I have to admit that I (apparently) never had the official recipe.
I realized this later while visiting a friend. She was bemoaning the fact that her daughter insisted on GBC every time she was home for a visit. My friend wanted to be daring – maybe serve carrots, with the Easter ham. Horrors! You'll ruin dinner! Absolutely not!
She found the perfect gift for her daughter. Campbell's Soup Company (the perpetrator of GBC and the maker of the 'condensed' soups that haunt American childhoods) has made a casserole dish just for GBC. Imprinted on the bottom of the dish is the recipe – so people like yours truly can never muck it up.
Campbell's Soup Green Bean Casserole Recipe:
1 can green beans (15.oz)
1 can Campbells Cream of Mushroom Soup (10oz)
1 can French Fried Onion Rings
1/2 cup milk
dash of pepper
1 tbs soy sauce
Drain beans. In a large bowl mix beans and 1/2 of the onion rings. In another bowl mix soup, milk and soy sauce. Add to beans and toss lightly to mix. Put into a casserole. Do not deviate from this by adding herbs or other fancy seasonings….such as garlic. Top with remaining onion rings and bake at 350F (175C) for 30 minutes. Remove and serve to happy Midwestern diners.
One final note: Julia Child once said that there are two types of people in the world: feeders and eaters. No comment. Tater Tot Hot Dish, anyone?
After that…. a few photos?
Here is my morning view from my desk…
And the evening….
Just thought we could all use a little visual relief….
Well, I know this is no Green Bean Casserole…. But, I try.
As it is pasta I'm sending it over to Patsy at Family, Friends and Food, the host for this weeks Presto Pasta Nights, founded by Ruth of Once Upon a Feast.
Patsy will have a round-up of all the wonderful pasta dishes from around the world on her blog on Friday.
Shrimp, Avocado and Olive Pasta
10oz (300gr) cleaned shrimp
4 green garlic, sliced, app 1/2 cup, (1.5oz, 45gr)
1/3 cup Greek olives (1.5oz, 45gr)
1/3 cup green olives (1.5oz, 45gr)
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced (3oz, 90gr)
1 tbs fresh lemon juice
1 tbs capers
2 tbs olive oil
1 avocado (6oz, 175gr)
1 tbs fresh basil
1 1/4 cup pasta – (3.5oz, 100gr)
Cook pasta according to package directions
Clean shrimp if needed.
Trim and thickly slice green garlic, using as much green top as possible or slice green onion and mince garlic. Slice olives in half or thirds. Cut cherry tomatoes in half. Snip basil. Remove avocado from shell and cut into large cubes.
Heat 1 tbs oil in a large, nonstick skillet. Add green garlic (or onion and garlic) and sauté briefly. Add shrimp and sauté until cooked through (they will turn opaque). Add remaining 1 tbs oil, lemon juice, capers, olives, and tomatoes. Cook, stirring, until tomatoes just start to get soft. Add pasta, stir well to combine and heat through. Add avocado, basil and serve.
Go forth and flavor!