GREEN BEAN AND ARTICHOKE CASSEROLE

 

Or, as we used to call it as kids, "stringbean-artichoke thing" ...

Please make the effort to use fresh green beans if you can. Please do NOT use canned ones. This makes all the difference between a near-restaurant-quality dish and something you get at Aunt Matilda's house that's only okay. If you want to go to the effort of preparing fresh artichoke hearts, do go ahead but frozen ones work very well in this dish. The marinates ones in oil, not so much, but they'll do in a pinch.

Oh okay, and since I'm allowing frozen artichoke hearts, I suppose I will allow you to use frozen beans if you wish, while pointing out that fresh beans are always better. Don't try to get away with using canned. I'll know. (Canned vegetables, eww.)

If you're using fresh green beans and you don't mind the extra labor, split them lengthwise (or use French-style if frozen). Cook the green beans in boiling salted water or steam until just tender. Medium-dice the artichoke hearts.

Saute the onions and garlic in the olive oil. In a large bowl, mix the beans, bread crumbs, cheese, hearts, and the oil with the onions and garlic. Season liberally with black pepper; salt to taste.

Put the mixture into a 9"x14" baking dish, and sprinkle the top with additional bread crumbs and cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 - 30 minutes.

 
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Chuck Taggart   (e-mail chuck)