Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Green Bean Casserole and the Rest of Thanksgiving 2011

Mostly I want to post the recipe for my green bean casserole, but I thought I'd also give the rest of Thanksgiving dinner a bit of time in the spotlight.

I make this homemade vegan roast every year at Thanksgiving. Even the omnivores get seconds, sometimes even thirds. It's quite good. I found the recipe online. (Edit: The recipe page isn't online anymore, but I have it written down. If anyone wants it, let me know and I'll do another post with the recipe.) (Edit: You can get the Vegan Holiday Roast recipe here.) I found that it needs about an hour longer of cooking time than it says to soak up all of the broth. Keep that in mind if you make it. It's so good and everyone will think you're a genius for making it.

I found the recipe for these Harvest Pies over at Vegan Dad's blog. I wish I had taken some photos of them without the tops on. They're full of butternut squash and potatoes and carrots and stuff. I think tempeh would be a great addition to theses as well. I'm going to try that the next time I make them. These are especially good with a bit of gravy.

Speaking of gravy... what Thanksgiving would be complete without it?! Stuffing and gravy are two of my favorite parts of the Thanksgiving meal. I've started making the Punk Rock Chickpea Gravy from Vegan with a Vengeance every year. The first time I made it, I was in heaven. I could probably eat this gravy with a spoon by itself and be happy. Quite a few people commented on the tastiness of the gravy this year, too. The only thing I do differently from the recipe is puree it. I like my gravy smooth so I stick my immersion blender in at the end and puree the heck out of it.

The mashed potatoes are almost gone! You know how to make mashed potatoes, I don't need to tell you. My secret ingredients are Earth Balance and vegetable broth. Yum!

And now for the green bean casserole! James was nice enough to top and tail them for me while I was doing other things... like finishing up that Sm'love Pie you see in the background there. The thing that makes my casserole special is the homemade mushroom soup. It's not hard to make and it freezes well so you can always make it in advance or make a double batch and stash some in the freezer for a rainy day. I also find it quite delicious on its own. You can make cream of pretty much anything using this recipe. Just substitute the mushrooms for whatever you like. Cream of asparagus, anyone?

Green Bean Casserole

Note: If you're making this for a crowd, double the recipe to fill a large rectangular baking dish. That's what I did for Thanksgiving. You might end up with some leftover soup, especially if you double it. I usually just freeze it and eat it later as a soup with some asparagus or something added to it.

3 cups of green beans, topped and tailed and cut in half (I'm guessing here. Use however many fill a small 8" square baking dish. When I buy them from the market they come in bags, so I usually just buy one bag for a little bit and 2 bags for double this.)
Cream of Mushroom Soup (recipe below)
1 can of fried onions

Preheat your oven to 350 F.

Mix the green beans, the soup and 3/4 of the can of friend onions and pour it all into an 8" square baking dish. Top with the remaining fried onions. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 5 minutes before eating.

Cream of Mushroom Soup

1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked for at least an hour, up to overnight
2 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced
half a head of cauliflower, chopped
1 clove of garlic, chopped
1 generous handful of oyster mushrooms, chopped
1 generous handful of another kind of mushroom, your choice, chopped
2 cups water
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon white pepper, optional
1/2 teaspoon salt (you might want to leave this out if your broth is salted)

 Add the broth and cashews to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. This will probably take from 2-5 minutes. Set aside.

Saute the mushrooms over medium heat in their own pan for about 5 minutes then turn off the heat and set them aside. You'll use them in a minute.

Add the olive oil to a large pot over medium heat. Once the oil is warm, add the onion and cauliflower. Saute for about 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and saute for another minute. Add in about 3/4 of the mushrooms, the cashew mixture, water, bay leaves, thyme, pepper and salt. Stir everything up and cover your pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Remove the bay leaves. If you have an immersion blender, stick it in the pot and blend until everything is pretty smooth. If you're using a food processor or blender, puree the soup in batches, being careful not to burn yourself and also being careful to let the steam escape as you're doing it or you'll have a big mess on your hands. Now add in the remaining 1/4 of your mushrooms. Taste for salt and add more if you think you need it.


  1. Me me me! I'd like the roast recipe please! It all looks delicious!

  2. I would like the roast recipe too - looks yummy!

  3. I posted the Vegan Holiday Roast recipe here for those that want it: