Bean there, done that.

Having been to the supermarket and scored myself some Green Beans, Brussel Sprouts and Bananas that were all reduced I was a bit confuzzled as to what to do with them. Obviously Bananas are not a problem because I happily ate one whilst walking round the shop and I had another when I got back home too, but I did think that making some Banana Bread was definitely in order. I looked through all the recipes that I had at home but I was always missing one ingredient (Apple Sauce - anyone know of a suitable replacement??) so I did a quick Google and Lo and Behold - didn't the recipe from the PPK pop up. I had all the ingredients, only I was a bit lost as to whether to use Baking Powder OR Bicarbonate of Soda seeing as Isa's recipe called for Baking Soda!! Is there a difference between Baking Powder and Bicarb? Is Baking Soda something else entirely?? Anyhooo, I settled on Bicarb and whilst the Bread didn't rise as much as I'd have liked, it tasted blinking yum and comes highly recommended by yours truly.
The Brussels Sprouts are sitting in the fridge and will get used up tomorrow but with the Green Beans I made Green Bean Casserole for the first time ever and
OH.MY. GOD!! I can't believe I've never tried this before - it was freaking AWESOME. OK so it's really a US (and Canadian??) thing and really, before blogging, there was no reason how I could ever have known about this dish. But I'm so happy I have discovered it's joy and deliciousness ness ness. I did read a few recipes but at the end of the day I just winged it. Cooking without recipes is definitely by far my favourite way to cook. A pinch of this here, a drop of that there, a taste of that....what else does it need? You all know the score I'm sure. So this is how I did it.
Heathen Green Bean Casserole serves 2 Ingredients Green Beans, cut into bite sized pieces and steamed for 10 mins Olive Oil 1 Onion, cut in half then sliced 3 Mushrooms, sliced 1 Clove of Garlic, diced More Olive Oil Flour Soya Milk Salt Pepper Oregano Marigold Vegetable Bouillon Method Heat about a tablespoon of Olive Oil in a pan and add the Onion. Saute on medium heat for 10-12 mins. When most of the Onions are caramelised and some edges are turning black, add the Mushrooms and Garlic. Stir constantly for 2 or 3 mins then empty onto a plate for later. In the same pan, add some more Olive Oil (2 Tablespoons - ish) and heat up. Add about 2 tablespoon of Flour and whisk briskly. Take off the heat then whilst whisking, slowly pour in some Soya Milk (about a cup). Return to heat and carry on whisking so as there are no lumps. Even if there are lumps it doesn't matter as a quick blitz with the blender will soon sort them out! Add the Onions, Mushrooms and Garlic to the Sauce add quite a lot of Salt (1 teaspoon) some Black Pepper, Oregano and 2 teaspoons of the Vegetable Bouillon and give everything a really good stir. Place in a dish and cover with Breadcrumbs, drizzle with Olive Oil and grill for 10 mins. Make sure the Breadcrumbs don't burn!! Totally Yummy!
shamelessly stolen photo of Green Beans because my blog looks so sad without photos
Ooooh oohh oooooooh. I got my P.I.F today from the luvverly Shelly and everything she sent me was simply GORGEOUS!!!
I am now the proud and happy owner of one of these adorable Felty Heart Pins and a Pin Cushion not to mention two Bath Bombs AND (she really has spoilt us) some absolutely STUNNING Doughnuts all stashed away in a gorgeous little bag. Keep an eye out for Shelly posting her tutorial on making the Doughnuts because these are just adorable.
I'm gutted I can't take a picture to show you all the wonderful things.
A BIG BIG BIG thank you to Shellyfish for making this so fun.


Anonymous said...

Baking soda & bicarb soda are the same thing. Here's a linkie that talks about the differences between powder & soda (http://chemistry.about.com/cs/foodchemistry/f/blbaking.htm).

What a fun P.I.F. gift from Shellyfish! :-)

jessy said...

isn't green bean casserole the best?! i love it so! we only make it maybe once a year, but it's a favorite of mine, for sure!

i think you can substitute oil or margarine for applesauce. maybe an extra banana would work?

bicarbonate of soda is baking soda - and baking powder is different. while baking powder actually contains sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) it also has cream of tartar in it - so it acts as a drying agent. they both cause your baked goods to rise, but the baking soda (or bicarbonate of soda) is an immediate rise, where (i think) baking powder takes a little longer to rise.

mmmmmmmm, bananas! :)

Anonymous said...

I'm so happy that everything arrived safely & that you love it! I wish I could have spoilt you more, but I don't know how to make cameras! Well, yet.

You know, I actually bring baking powder back from North America with me when I go visit - you can't use the two interchangeably. Jessy's right, and using the wrong one can really foul up a recipe - but sometimes you can fudge it! I can find baking powder in specialty stores in France, but it is horribly expensive, and in Canada it's peanuts.

Joanna said...

girl, if it's possible to eat an unhealthy amount of bananas, trust me, i do. haha i eat about 5 or 6 a day. i had a plantain today just to see which i liked better and it's still bananas. they are the best!

i was just gonna answer the baking soda question, too, and these girls beat me to it. i haven't even heard of buying bicarbonate of soda though. that's interesting. i'm glad it worked out though. banana bread rocks!

Amanda said...

I had to look because I wasn't sure about the baking soda thing either but yes, it is sodium bicarbonate! I've never *gasp* had green bean casserole either so after your rave reviews, I must! The Emotional Lives of Animals is a little sad but a whole bunch more inspiring! I think you'll love it..at least I do!

How's your no-buy effort going? Mine's been okay but I've had a few ups and downs but am doing okay..books..my weakness ;)

wingraclaire said...

You have great friends - I was going to give you the same baking powder/baking soda tutorial but they beat me to it :)

I love that ppk recipe too, and it's the one I make when I have time. When I'm in a hurry I use the "one-bowl" recipe from the Farm cookbook, which still tastes good but not the ultimate in deliciousness.

Last year when we did a unit on food science we baked this bread, among others. The kids loooooove to cook and bake!


River said...

^^ What Jessy said about baking soda and powder :)

When life throws you bananas, make banana bread! Right?

Green bean casserole! Cooking without recipes is fun! It sometimes translates into kitchen disaster but it's still fun to wing-it! :)

Your Shelly goodies are so cute!!

ginger said...

yeah...what they said about the baking soda and powder. sometimes it has cornstarch in it too, baking powder, that is.

ginger said...

oh, yeah! aorry. in place of apple sauce, you could use apple butter, a mooshed banana, vegetable oil (like 1/2 the amount though), margarine (same as the oil), or any egg replacer...since the apple sauce is probably an egg substitute.

Sanja said...

As Jessy said, baking powder is bicarbonate of soda/baking soda + cream of tartar.

I doesn't have anything to do with quick or slow rise though: bicarbonate of soda needs some kind of acid (lemon juice, vinegar) to do anything.

Sal said...

yum, you've made me want to make banana bread now!!

I don't have anything intelligent to add, everyone's already said it!

catalangardener said...

Bean Casserole sounds delightful. Hurrah for you!

I like making stuff up too - just had a tasty lentil/rice salad ting for lunch - lots of bits and bobs (much olive oil) and some lemon juice (surprise). Though I did get a look of 'that's a bit healthy' from BigD but it we both enjoyed it v much - it was yummy!

Hurrah for me!

Felicity said...

I've been wanting to make a green bean casserole too. I don't remember my mum ever making it when I was a kid, maybe it's more an American thing than Canadian.

Are you gonna roast the sprouts?

I LOVE the heart pin!

Chelsea said...

I'm an American and I've never had green bean casserole! I actually didn't even know what it was... but sounds tasty!

Bethany said...

I love my brussels sprouts steamed. yummy.

green bean casserole is one of my faves.

my mom used to boil potatoes, string beans and a bay leaf. simple, but good.

baking soda = bicarbonate of soda. baking powder is different. I have seen some cookbooks that have talked about how to sub them for each other, but it's not typically a good idea. they both taste nasty if you use too much :).

aTxVegn said...

I'm so happy you enjoyed Green Bean Casserole! It sounds wonderful.

DJ said...

The green bean casserole sounds really good! And my top tip for making banana bread without applesauce is... add more bananas. I have a great recipe for fat-free banana bread where the wet ingredients are 5 ripe/overipe bananas, 1 cup sugar, 1 tsp vanilla and 1/4 cup water blended together. Really banana-y, really moist and really good! And yes,, you could probaly cut the amount of sugar without too many repercussions!

Jenn said...

Mmmm green bean caserole...

Susan said...

I've never made green bean casserole really either. Lots of things with green beans in them, but no casserole ever! It always sounds yummy though.

I love Vcon's Banana Bread recipe. The Vegan Vittles one is also fabulous as well. Banana bread is awesome.

Wulfcwen said...

Hmm I will ahve to take a look at that recipe site you linked to. I like the sound of the Bean casserole as well. I need some new ideas with veg.

Wulfcwen said...

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