Mary’s on Fox 31–Quick Tricks for Fast Gourmet Green Beans

I’ll be on TV again tomorrow, just one day before Thanksgiving with ideas for how to make a dish festive without a lot of fuss. We all know that Thanksgiving can be a huge undertaking.  To keep from getting overwhelmed, it’s nice to plan a couple dishes on the simpler side.  This recipe incorporates four tricks for easy, gourmet flair:

  1. Save time with high-quality frozen vegetables
  2. Stir in a dollop of roasted garlic
  3. Add flavor-rich sauteed mushrooms
  4. Sprinkle with fresh herbs

Green Beans with Roasted Garlic and Sauteed Mushroooms

  • 1 lrg head garlic (to make about 2 Tbsp. roasted garlic paste)

The night before or at least an hour in advance, roast garlic:  Preheat the oven to 350 (F).  Rub a head of garlic with about ½ to 1 Tbsp. olive oil.  Place inside a garlic roaster, small glass baking dish with a lid, or just wrap in foil.  Bake about 45-60 minutes, until garlic head is soft when squeezed from the sides.

  • ½ lb. cremini or portobello mushrooms, sliced about 1/8” thick
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil

In a large saute pan, heat oil until quite warm, then add mushroom slices and cook over medium to medium-low heat about 10-15 minutes, until their moisture is evaporated and they are lightly browned.  Stir occasionally to prevent burning.  Remove from heat.

  • 1 ½ lbs. fresh green beans, ends trimmed then cut diagonally into roughly 2” lengths (about 6 cups, trimmed)
  • 1 cup Pacific Foods chicken broth
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil

While mushrooms cook, prepare beans then combine with broth in a large saute pan with a lid. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer about 5-10 minutes, until almost tender when tested with a fork.

While beans cook, squeeze roasted garlic from skins into a small bowl.  When beans are almost tender, remove lid and push beans to the sides of pan.  Add roasted garlic to center of pan and, using a large fork, mash and blend with remaining chicken broth to form a thin paste.  Blend in olive oil, then stir garlic paste into beans to coat.

  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh tarragon
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Stir cooked mushrooms, tarragon, and salt and pepper into green beans.  Cook 2-3 more minutes, until all of broth has evaporated and flavors have melded.  Serve immediately.

Note on Green Beans:

If you can’t find decent green beans in the produce aisle (which can be tough between November and May), a 6-oz bag of frozen can be substituted–as long as they are the whole petite green beans or haricorts verts, a tender French variety of green bean.  Safeway’s O brand and CW are both good options.  To cook, use only 1/2 cup chicken broth and reduce the cooking time by about half.

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