Vegan Green Bean & Mushroom Casserole

I say it's vegan because that's what it is and hopefully, this is what you're searching for on Google. However, when you taste the final product, you'll have no clue that it's much different than the Cambell's condensed soup in a traditional recipe. Except, this all plant based and has no MSG and a LOT of flavorful goodness.


Because Peas have a lot of plant protein, I added snap peas to the mix of fresh green beans. They are very similar in flavor to green beans so the blend well and add some helpful protein.


Recipe

1 lb Fresh Green Beans, stem cut off

1 lb Fresh Snap Peas, stem also peeled off and the "string" pulled off too

1 lb Portobello Mushrooms or Cremini

10 oz Cipollini Onions, cut in quarters

2 tbs Sliced Garlic

2 cans Coconut Cream or Coconut Milk

2 tbs Flat Leaf Parsley, gently sliced fine

2 tbs Corn Starch, then add cold water to make a slurry

2 tbs Avocado Oil for sauteing


What To Do

First, you will gain more phytochemical benefits if you chop your garlic first and let it sit for 10 minutes before you cook it. Don't be intimidated by that word, it's simply the healing properties locked inside the garlic that are released over the course of 10 minutes. Clean the beans and peas, if the beans are really long, cut them in half so they are easier to fit in your mouth, so in half to make them shorter, not in half legnthwise. I blanched my beans in boiling salted water and cooled them in ice water. I recommend this if you are preparing this dish a day ahead of time.


I used portobello mushrooms for this. Any dark mushroom will work as well, like a shiitake or cremini. They are a bit more dense and get less soggy. If you are using portobello's, you can remove the "dirty taste" by peeling the skin off the top of the bell, starting at the edge first and pulling just the skin towards the center of the cap. Using a spoon, you can also clean out the gills under the cap. Work over a bowl or lay down wax paper to catch your mess and clean up will be a whole lot easier.


Cut the mushrooms into 1/2" pieces or 1/4" thick and no more than 1" long if you want to get fancy. Just do your best to keep all the pieces even. Heat up a skillet over very high heat, add your mushrooms and then drizzle enough avocado oil over them so hear a sizzle. Don't shake the pan, if you do, you will cool the pan off and the mushrooms will leak their water and boil themselves instead of keeping the pan hot & dry so the sugars caramelize in the mushrooms. Gently turn the mushrooms with tongs or rubber spatula until they are brown and crispy. Next, add your onions and cook them until tender, you can reduce the heat now to a medium high heat. Once the onions are translucent, add your garlic and stir it to incorporate and lightly toast the garlic. Then add the coconut milk and bring that to a simmer, season it nicely with salt. Mix your cornstarch slurry by adding just enough cold water that cornstarch temporarily dissolves. If you let it sit long enough it will settle and need to be stirred again. You'll know what I mean... it can be fun though.


Slowly add your slurry to the simmering coconut milk. Tight bubbles will start to form. Cook it for another minute or two and remove it all from the heat. Add your beans and peas to a casserole dish, lightly sprayed or oiled and pour the mushroom mix over the top, evenly. Bake the casserole at 425f until it is hot all the way through. If the casserole was prepped the day before, it may take 30-40 minutes to get hot and bubbly again. You can add greasy crispy onions if you prefer, but I don't and chances are, you're not going to be cooking for me. So the choice, like everything, is yours.

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