Photo: Linda Puglies; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Torie Cox
Active Time
1 Hour 15 Mins
Total Time
2 Hours
Yield
Serves 10

You might have a go-to green bean casserole recipe, but you have to try this one. These thin, crispy fried leeks are an absolutely delicious casserole topper and look way more elegant than the canned fried onions. The leeks fry up very quickly; keep a close watch on them as they cook.

How to Make It

Step 1

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high. Add green beans; return to a boil, and cook 2 minutes. Drain green beans, and rinse under cold running water to cool. Spread in a single layer on paper towels to drain. Let stand at room temperature until completely dry, about 45 minutes.

Step 2

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add onion, and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and wine, and cook until most of the wine evaporates, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle flour over onion mixture, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Add milk, and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in cream cheese, salt, pepper, and nutmeg until smooth.

Step 3

Transfer green beans to a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Pour milk mixture evenly over green beans, and stir to coat. Spread in an even layer; cover with aluminum foil. Chill until ready to bake, up to 1 day ahead.

Step 4

Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove casserole from refrigerator while oven preheats. Bake, covered, until hot and bubbly around the edges, about 1 hour.

Step 5

While beans bake, cut leeks in half lengthwise; cut each half into 2- to 3-inch pieces. Thinly slice into long strips (about 2 cups thin strips). Heat canola oil in a small saucepan over medium-high to 350°F. Fry leeks in hot oil, in 2 to 3 batches, until golden, 1 to 2 minutes per batch. Remove with a slotted spoon, and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle fried leeks over hot casserole just before serving.