I first tried poutine, a glorious Canadian specialty of gravy-covered French fries dotted with cheese curds, during my visit to Quebec in September. Thinking back on its rich, so-bad-for-you-but-who-cares-its-delicious deliciousness got me inspired to make a green bean poutine with fried green beans. It is a green bean casserole that you can eat with your fingers!
Green Bean Poutine:
Yield: 1 big bowl, or 3-4 small bowls
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ shallot, thinly sliced
- 8 ounces assorted mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour, plus 1 cup, divided
- ¼ cup white wine
- 1 ½ cups mushroom stock**(homemade or store bought vegetable stock)
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- ½ cup finely crushed French’s French fried onions
- 1 ½ cups cold club soda
- ½ pound string beans
- Peanut oil (or other neutral oil) for frying
- Queso blanco (other other semi-soft cheese), cubed
- Sliced almonds, toasted
- Parlsey, roughly chopped
1) To make the mushroom velouté/gravy: Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until soft and translucent. Add the mushrooms and cook until soft. Add ¼ cup flour and cook 1 minute more, stirring continually. Add the wine and stock and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until thickened, about 15-20 minutes.
2) In the meantime, make the tempura batter: Combine the remaining 1 cup flour, cornstarch, crushed French fried onions, and club soda in a large bowl and mix well.
3) Heat the peanut oil in a fryer or about 2 inches up in a wok or small saucepan until a bit of the batter sizzles when dropped in. Dip the beans into the batter a few at a time, then fry in the hot oil until crispy and golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Top the fried green beans with mushroom gravy, cheese, almonds, and parsley. Serve immediately.
** To make homemade mushroom stock, remove the stems from the mushrooms and add to a small pot with about 1 quart of water. Simmer for 45 minutes and strain.