1 pound fresh green beans (thin) with ends cut off
3 cups Crimini Mushrooms (Brown Baby Bella), cubed
2 shallots
1 cup light cream
1 cup 1% milk (2% works well too)
1 tablespoon sea salt (or to taste)
1-1/2 tablespoons fresh ground pepper (or to taste)
1-2 cloves crushed garlic (optional)
1-1/2 cups Panko breadcrumbs
3 cups vegetable oil (for frying onions)


  1. Prepare the shallot onion topping beforehand.  Remove the skin of the shallots and halve. Cut into thin slices. Pour the vegetable oil into a small deep pot and heat. After the oil starts to shimmer place in one slice of onion, as a test. If the onion bubbles and floats to the top, put in a 1/3 of the rest, so that it only covers one layer. If not wait and retest. Fry until light brown to brown, then remove with a draining or slotted spoon.  Place the done onions directly into a bowl of panko and toss. Repeat the process until all onions are fried and coated. Set aside.
  2. Prepare the mushroom sauce: Quarter the mushrooms, and then slice thinly and evenly, discarding the stems.
  3. Combine the mushrooms, cream, salt and pepper in a pan.  Make sure that the mushrooms to not take up more than two rows in height, or they will not cook properly. Choose a bigger pan or make more than one batch. Bring to a boil and then lower heat. Stir occasionally so that the cream does not burn. The mushrooms will begin to extract a thickening substance, so that you don’t need to use flour to thicken the sauce.
  4. When the mushroom sauce has reduced in size by about 50%, add in the milk, and continue to stir. The mushrooms should be very soft tender and about 30% of their original size when done. Taste and add more pepper and/or salt to the sauce if desired.
  5. Wash and trim ends from green beans.  In a separate pan, sauté the beans in grape seed or other oil until al dente.
  6. Arrange the beans in a serving dish, then smother with the mushroom sauce.
  7. Garnish with mixture of fried shallots and panko crumbs.
  8. If you prefer, you may bake this!

Ahhhhh… thinking about Aunt Ada’s green bean casserole….the sauce…the beans…the crunchy topping…but didn’t our doctor say to cut down on salt and bad fats? And did Pilgrims eat out of a can?

Always on the search for healthy ways to re-create our favorite family recipes, our Mystery Chef has transformed and jazzed up one of the holiday favorites - the green bean casserole.  Traditionally, as our recent forebearers (and Aunt Ada) prepared it, the casserole was made with canned mushroom soup, canned green beans and baked. Our Chef has created a more heart-healthy version that is high on freshness and taste and lower on salt and fat. 

Offer your family this new world version of this classic casserole fit for an original Pilgrim!  It’s as simple to make as Aunt Ada’s. Fresh is the name of the game here: fresh mushrooms, green beans and scallions. Salt to taste, not to invade.  It’s easy to prepare a fresh mushroom sauce (you can control the fat content) and pour over fresh green beans that you have sauteed the way you like. Top with delicious fried shallots tossed in Panko crumbs, and you will become the new Aunt Ada with better recipes.

Deconstructed Green Bean Casserole
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