We returned to Stephen's for Thanksgiving 2011, but this time instead of driving down to Portland, we just added a table to include Tina, Tony, Regina and Erin.
And once again, despite all of my efforts at organization, we failed to put together a new menu this year. Stephen impressed yet again with his tried and true Good Eats Roast Turkey from Alton Brown, and I made the French Bean Casserole recipe that came with the French green beans I bought years ago from Costco and have made every Thanksgiving since.
However, there is a plan in the works for next year. I'm still mulling the Asian-American Thanksgiving, and Koshare has been seriously discussing a Southwest Thanksgiving, so expect a theme that veers away from traditional fare next year! Hopefully!
In the meantime, my Aunt Sandy brought a fabulous Japanese Cheesecake that was a hit, and even if my French Bean Casserole is boring, it also remains a crowd-pleaser:
French Bean Casserole
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 T. butter, divided
1 T. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 t. each salt and pepper
8 oz. cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 lb. French beans
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 T. fresh thyme, chopped (optional)
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 c. bread crumbs
1 c. grated sharp cheddar
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Blanch green beans in a pot of salted water for 3 minutes, then rinse under cool water to stop the cooking process.
Meanwhile, in a medium sauce pan, heat 1 T. butter and olive oil, then add garlic and sliced onion and cook for 2 minutes. Add mushrooms with salt and pepper; keep stirring until soft, about 5 minutes, then add cooked beans, 1 T. butter and combine well. Mix in mushroom soup, thyme (if using) and Parmesan cheese, and season to taste.
Pour into baking dish, then sprinkle bread crumbs and cheddar over the top. Bake for 25-30 minutes.