Green Bean Bacon Bundles
Perhaps Campbell Soup’s greatest contribution to society, the tried-and-true green bean casserole is a Thanksgiving staple in many American homes. In fact, Del Monte Green Bean Index recently surveyed 1,500 Americans to rate their fondness of classic green bean casserole to discover which states contain the biggest fanatics. Kentucky rated first, with 78 percent of its residents claiming to “really like or love the dish.” Wisconsin (77 percent), Missouri (76 percent), Iowa (75 percent) and Maine (74 percent) rounded out the top five.
Of all of the traditional Thanksgiving side dishes, it is my personal favorite. From the creamy mushroom soup to those delightfully crispy onions, I not only expect this dish's appearance on the table each year—I anticipate it.
Nevertheless, the depth of my fondness for green bean casserole has moved me to make the dish year-round, especially in the winter months when I desire straight-forward comfort food.
It seems only fitting, then, to elevate the green bean for the holiday season. In lieu of our beloved green bean casserole, I offer green bean bacon bundles—a simple, impressive-looking alternative that will make your Thanksgiving dinner just a tad more special. (You may even be able to convert a few Kentuckians.)
Green Bean Bacon Bundles
Makes: 16 servings
Serving Size: 1 bundle
Active Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
8 thick-cut bacon slices
6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1 lb. green beans or haricot verts, trimmed and blanched
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
Preheat an oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
Cook bacon in batches in a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat until bacon slices are slightly brown along the edges, but still underdone. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess grease and let cool. When cool, cut each slice in half crosswise.
Divide the green beans into 16 equal portions, about 6-7 beans per bundle. Gather each portion into a neat bunch and wrap a half slice of bacon tightly around the center to hold the beans together.
Place the green bean bundles on the prepared baking sheet with the loose ends of the bacon facing down.
In a small bowl, whisk together melted butter and garlic salt and set aside.
Sprinkle the brown sugar evenly over the bundles and drizzle with the butter mixture.
Roast for about 20 to 25 minutes, until the bacon is browned and crisp, and the brown sugar has become a glaze.
Let stand for 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the green bean bundles to serving platter and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Williams and Sonoma.