Every year, I try to introduce something new to my family's Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. And every year, my plot is foiled because my family loves what they love - creamed corn, Idaho potatoes mashed with nothing but butter and milk, simple cranberry sauce, Stovetop-style plain bread stuffing, and kimchee.
Once I used red skinned potatoes, left the skins on, added garlic and made garlic "smashed" potatoes.
One year, I made roasted butternut squash soup that was beautifully swirled in each bowl with a chive cream.
Poached pear salad. Corn bread stuffing. Creamed spinach.
No. No. No. Everyone ate it all. They said it tasted good, but I could tell they were wishing for the old standards, especially the green bean casserole. Not a casserole made from blanched fresh green beans mixed with baby portabella mushrooms, tossed with a creamy bechamel and topped with caramelized onions. No, my family loves green bean casserole brought to us in 25 minutes by a Green Giant, the Campbell's kids, and the French('s). It's not like I hate green bean casserole because I think it tastes bad. I just hate green bean casserole.
This year, though, I think Dr. Paula Deen may have cured my family of green bean casserole. (Though the garlic and herb roasted red potatoes still won't replace mashed potatoes).
But if we have green bean casserole with bacon in it next year, I think I'll cry.
Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles
based on Paula Deen's Green Bean Bundles
Ingredients for Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles
1 lb fresh green beans
salt + pepper
Directions for Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles
Blanch 1 lb. fresh green beans for a few minutes (Paula says 3 minutes, but I definitely took the green beans out within one minute).
Paula tosses her green beans with olive oil, salt and pepper, but I didn't bother, since bacon has enough fat and salt.
Microwave bacon in a single layer for about 1 minute to start their cooking process.
Wrap one slice of bacon around a bundle of about 4 or 5 green beans. Instead of wrapping the bacon on top of itself, the way a roll of Scotch tape looks, start closer to one end of the bundle and slightly spiral the wrapping.
Place bundles with the loose bacon end tucked underneath.
Roast in preheated 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.