Monday, December 29, 2008

Recipe 7 Some Things for the Holidays part 1

I know I have not posted much lately but I was enjoying the visit from my Mom too much to stop and blog! So, it has been a while since I have posted a recipe and both of these were at our Thanksgiving and our Christmas dinners :)

I have always loved green bean casserole but have wondered if there was a recipe to make it from scratch, well I found one that was really good. I did not use a cast iron skillet, just made everything in a normal 2 quart skillet and then poured it into a glass dish and I added 2 slices of cooked bacon :) Here it is:

For the topping:
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Nonstick cooking spray
For beans and sauce:
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 pound fresh green beans, rinsed, trimmed and halved
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
12 ounces mushrooms, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup half-and-half
Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F.

Combine the onions, flour, panko and salt in a large mixing bowl and toss to combine. Coat a sheet pan with nonstick cooking spray and evenly spread the onions on the pan. Place the pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake until golden brown, approximately 30 minutes. Toss the onions 2 to 3 times during cooking. Once done, remove from the oven and set aside until ready to use. Turn the oven down to 400 degrees F.

While the onions are cooking, prepare the beans. Bring a gallon of water and 2 tablespoons of salt to a boil in an 8-quart saucepan. Add the beans and blanch for 5 minutes. Drain in a colander and immediately plunge the beans into a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain and set aside.

Melt the butter in a 12-inch cast iron skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to give up some of their liquid, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and nutmeg and continue to cook for another 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir to combine. Cook for 1 minute. Add the broth and simmer for 1 minute. Decrease the heat to medium-low and add the half-and-half. Cook until the mixture thickens, stirring occasionally, approximately 6 to 8 minutes.

Remove from the heat and stir in 1/4 of the onions and all of the green beans. Top with the remaining onions. Place into the oven and bake until bubbly, approximately 15 minutes. Remove and serve immediately.

There is also a sweet potato dish that Jeff loves so that will be my next post.

Monday, December 22, 2008

finally a little bit of Christmas

Since most of you have been reading this blog I will not go into the details of how discouraging this house has been, especially lately. I had not even opened our Christmas decorations (just rescued them from the sewage). My mom arrived in Billings late Saturday night and I just could not stand the thought of our blank walls and 90's wallpaper being the only thing we looked at as we opened our gifts Thursday morning so yesterday the boxes came open, the tree is up and icicle lights are on the walls. The decorations paired with the beautiful white world (albeit incredibly cold world) have finally stirred up some Christmas spirit for the Grissoms and we are thrilled to celebrate the birth of our Saviour! Below is a picture of our tree, there is even some of the 90's wallpaper hovering in the background.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Introducing Otis

Any of you who know Jeff know that it is really difficult for him to have a gift for someone and not give it to them... so, when I came home from work Jeff had my birthday present.

Meet Otis:

He is almost 3 months old, bichon/yorkie/poodle (none of which we wanted but all together, they make a pretty cute mutt), he is about 3 lbs right now and should end up anywhere from 5 to 15 lbs. The perfect size for our house and we hope the perfect playmate for Moose.

Thanks for the sweet gift Jeff :)

Saturday, December 6, 2008


Oh yes, the last couple of days are as much fun as the title of this blog makes them sound...

We were supposed to leave for Boise yesterday to meet our new niece Michala. On Thursday Jeff was cleaning out Frank's cage so that we could take him to a friends house, when he went to the basement to get new litter he found our basement flooded... bad... even worse, it was not "just" water, it was sewage.... So, we called our landlord and let her know, she said she would start calling people the next morning so we thought that would be fine. We realized a little later that it was not an isolated event but that anything that went down any drain in our house and our neighbors was causing more flooding, no flushing the toilet, no taking a shower, no doing laundry (not normally horrible but it was time, very low on clean clothes). We ended up staying at the Holiday Inn, we could not be more grateful for Jeff's corporate discount. We both had to be at work at 5 am but we were off at 9 (which is when we were planning to leave for Boise), not too long of a work day and another phone call to our landlord letting her know the direness of the situation. Roto Rooter showed up at 2 and everything was finally going down the drain, woo hoo!!!! By 5 we had everything cleaned out of the wet boxes and drying throughout our house, just in time for Jeff to make it to the second half of his work day and too late for us to still make our weekend in Idaho... Oh well, the roads were not the best for travel anyway, we look forward to trying again in January :)