I got inspired by a recent recipe by Ben Mims from the LA Times (thanks Ben), which featured Green Beans with Mushrooms and Fried Onions. I thought it would be good for our Chinese style Thanksgiving meal. But of course, my son Stephen and I had to change it up a bit. We cooked all three ingredients separately and then bound them together with a quick sauce of Tamari (GF Soy Sauce), Chicken Broth (you can also use Vegetable Broth) and sautéed Mushrooms. Where we differed from the original recipe is that used a combination of King Oyster Mushrooms and fresh Shitakes. We also used a thicker Green Bean and blanched them first and left out the Cornstarch. And, we cooked Shallots instead of Onions in Oil, which results in not only insanely delicious shreds of fried Shallots, it also leaves you with some tasty Shallot Oil, which can be used for several future stir-fries. After all three ingredients were cooked separately, we cooked the sauce and then tossed it all together. Because the ingredients were all cooked separately, it was easy to make it all ahead of time and then put it all together at the last minute. This was a big favorite and will probably become our go-to Thanksgiving Green Bean recipe from now on!
Green Beans with Mushrooms and Fried Shallots
1 pound of Green Beans, ends trimmed
8 ounces of mixd Mushrooms (we used King Oyster and Shitakes)
a pinch of Sea Salt and Pepper
2 large Shallots, sliced into thin rings (about 1/2 cup)
1 cup Vegetable Oil (we used high heat Safflower)
2 Tablespoons Tamari
1/3 cup Chicken or Vegetable Broth
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
Place the Green Beans in boiling water and blanch for 4 - 5 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Put aside.
In a frying pan, put in the Oil and add the Shallots. Cook for 10 - 12 minutes, stirring occasionally until the Shallots are golden brown. Remove from the Oil with a slotted spoon and put on paper towel lined plates to drain. Reserve the Shallot OIl.
Using 2 Tablespoons of the Shallot Oil, cook the sliced Mushrooms in a frying pan until the Mushrooms are tender, sprinkling with a pinch of Sea Salt and Pepper. Put aside.
When ready, use an additional 1 Tablespoon of Shallot Oil in a wok and add in the Garlic. Cook until you can smell the fragrance. Then add in the Chicken Broth and Tamari and bring to a boil. Put in the Green Beans and Mushrooms and toss to coat and heat them. Then put into a serving bowl and top with the fried Shallots.
Five Element Analysis
Green Beans belong to the Wood Element and Mushrooms come from the Earth Element. The Shallots and Garlic bring in the Metal Element and frying them adds some Fire. Chicken or Vegetable Broth brings in more Wood and the Tamari makes sure that the Water Element is present just a little bit too. Who knew that this one dish could be so balanced?