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Serve a Healthy Green Bean & Onion Ring Casserole

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Yes, it is possible to serve a low-calorie Thanksgiving favorite without sacrificing on flavor!

Green Bean casserole
Fitness coach and weight-loss expert Vinnie Tortorich has published a waistline-friendly set of Thanksgiving recipes from contributor Andy Schreiber, which he calls "The Lighter Side of Thanksgiving" on his blog,VinnieBlog.com.

Check out Vinnie's healthy alternative to the classic green bean casserole -- it'smade with all fresh ingredients.Go for flavor and health this holiday season!

Green Bean & Onion Ring Casserole

2 pounds fresh string beans, trimmed
1 pound fresh mushrooms
1 cup nonfat chicken broth
8 oz. evaporated skim milk
16 oz. nonfat sour cream
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons whole wheat flour, separated
1 large onion
2 cups panko bread crumbs
2 cups oatmeal
1 cup egg substitute
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Olive oil cooking spray
Salt and pepper to taste

Method
Start with the onion rings so you can work on the other components while they're baking. Peel the onion and slice it into rings, pushing the layers through to make individual rings. Put the oatmeal in a food processor, pulverizing it until it reaches a very fine consistency, almost like bread crumbs. In three flat dishes or bowls, place: one cup of whole wheat flour, the egg substitute and, in the third bowl, mix the panko crumbs, pulverized oatmeal, garlic powder and salt and pepper. Spray a cookie sheet with the cooking spray.

One by one, take the onion rings, dipping them first into the flour, then the egg substitute, and finally the bread crumb mixture, making sure they are fully coated with all three steps. (It's best to use one hand for the flour and the bread crumbs, and the other hand for the egg. Otherwise, you wind up with a horrible mess.) Place the finished rings on the cookie sheet. If you start to run out of room, you can put the smaller rings inside the larger ones. When the rings are all on the sheet, spray them gently with the cooking spray and place in a 350 degree oven. Bake until they turn a golden brown, usually 20 to 30 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Meanwhile, steam the string beans in a large steamer until fully tender. Set aside. Take the mushrooms and put them through a food processor, chopping them down until they're quite fine but not absolute mush. In a medium-sized saucepan, saute the chopped mushrooms in the chicken stock until soft. Add the evaporated milk, sour cream and salt and pepper. In a small saucepan, make a roux with the olive oil and 3 tablespoons of flour. Add this to the mushroom soup mix, stirring thoroughly to incorporate. Continue to cook down until it reaches a nice thick consistency. Place the steamed string beans in a Pyrex baking dish, making sure they're evenly distributed. Pour the mushroom soup over them, making sure they're all fully covered. Distribute the onion rings over the top and place in a 350 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Serve.

For more of Andy's healthy Thanksgiving recipes, go to VinnieBlog.com.


next: Cheers to Thanksgiving Cocktails!
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