Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Green Bean- Potato Bake

Thank you for saying hello to my little girl- I so appreciate all the good wishes and blessings. We read every comment with a grateful heart. Life with Miss Baby has been wonderful and incredibly busy; my mother has been making many quick and delicious meals to keep us well nourished.

One of our family's favorite recipes is green bean patties that I have shared nearly 5 years ago. A spicy green bean filling is encased in mashed potatoes and coated with either an egg wash or a semolina coating and shallow-fried. Delicious indeed, but it is quite time-intensive to form individual patties and fry them. My mom has devised this recipe as a short-cut method to achieving the same great flavor for a fraction of the time and labor.

This is a very forgiving recipe. Use whatever proportions of green beans, potatoes and eggs that you desire. Season the green beans however you like. Any baking dish will do, you can bake it quickly in the microwave oven or a bit longer in a conventional oven, or just go ahead and form the layers in a pan and cook on low slow heat on the stove-top. You can't go wrong.

Green Bean- Potato Bake

1. Potato layer: Boil 4 medium potatoes until tender, then peel and mash the potatoes gently with 1 tbsp. all-purpose flour, salt and pepper. I like yukon gold potatoes (this time we used Trader Joe's golden potatoes) because they mash to a buttery consistency. But over-working the potatoes will make them gluey and sticky so use a gentle hand.

2. Green bean layer: Trim and chop 1 lb. green beans. Saute onions in some oil, then stir fry the beans until tender with turmeric, red chili powder, cumin- coriander powder, ginger garlic paste, garam masala and salt. Use all seasonings to taste, keeping in mind that this mixture should be flavorful to complement the bland potato.

3. Egg wash: Beat 2 large eggs. If you wish, grate some cheese for an additional layer.

4. Assembly: Grease an 8 x 8 (or so) baking dish. Pat down half the mashed potatoes into an even layer, sprinkle evenly with green beans and cover with the remaining potatoes. Microwave for 7-8 minutes (times may vary in different ovens). then pour on the eggs evenly and microwave for another minute.

This quick bake can be cut into squares and served as an appetizer or snack with some ketchup, or eaten as a side dish in a meal. It would be nice on a Thanksgiving table! Each bite is loaded with spicy vegetables and creamy potatoes- a great way to replicate my favorite flavors without a lot of fuss. 

On The Bookshelf

The book The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma was mentioned on a book blog sometime this summer, so I picked it up when I spotted it on the "new arrivals" shelf of the public library. The author is a young woman who talks about her librarian Dad and how they started on a project where Dad would read to her every day for 100 days without a break. 100 days came and went and they continued to read together every single day without fail for 9 whole years (!) until the author went away to college. This childhood memoir was a fun read with many touching moments, even if the writing tended to be choppy at times.

As it happened, I started on this book right after my daughter was born, reading a page or two here and there in between the endless care that a newborn needs. The timing was perfect- in the foreword of the book, the author's father talks about his deep commitment to parenthood in the most moving way. I looked at my brand new infant and promised her that I would do my best- by reading to her every day and in all the hundred other ways needed to raise a child.

Baby Lila's reading career has started, at 6 weeks of age, with this board book.

It goes "Elephants are big; mice are little." etc. Lila says the plot line is riveting and she likes the pictures. I had to laugh out loud at "Ladies are big; ladybugs are little".

I'll see you in a few days with another quick recipe- until then, have a great week!


  1. I remembered you just in the morning and thought of dropping a line to know how you are doing.
    Seems like I am the last one in the blogosphere to congratulate you guys. :) Somehow missed your last post.
    My blessings to the cute, little bundle of joy and wishes to you. Take care.

  2. Hi Nupur. This recipe looks great. Just wondering, is there anything I can use instead of egg? I was thinking white sauce (milk & flour) but wasn't sure if I needed to add anything else to enhance flavor. Thank you :)

  3. So good to see your post and hear about baby Lila! :-)

    Thanks for another great recipe - the egg wash sounds so much better than the egg custard which most casseroles have or the white sauce of an au gratin!

    I started reading very early to K too and she still loves her bedtime stories at 6 years even though she started reading on her own last year!

    Btw , I'm having a giveaway on my blog and would love you to participate!

  4. Hi
    Thanks for this recipe Nupur a sure try for me...

  5. Nice to hear from you Nupur. That is fantastic little baby has already started reading albeit through you. It is the most wonderful thing for both the parent and the baby.

    This green bean potato bake looks so easy and I so want to give it a try.

  6. Good to hear about Lila's progress ;) and this bake sounds lovely for a lazy weekend one pot meal.

  7. What a great blog you have here! Found you when I was searching for a Khichdi recipe! Can't believe you have been writing for 6 years now! I have a blog that is a year old and I cant believe how long its been! :) looking forward to reading you.:)

  8. Hey Nupur! So good to see you blog again. Hope you all had a lovely Diwali. Do post a picture of Lila when you find some time.

    This recipe came just in time, I am expecting some guests this weekend and I was thinking of making ur green bean patties for apps. I wonder if this one needs a crust to be served as an app? will it hold well without one? Do you have any more ideas for apps that can be served with tea in the evening before dinner?


  9. I love your update--it brought my own new-mom experience right back to me. I read to my son every night, and I suspect that while memories of breast feeding and diapering will fade, the nightly book routine will stay with me forever.
    Looking forward to seeing lots more picture books on the blog!

  10. Hey Nupur! I love baby Lila's first book!! Ladies and big and ladybugs are small indeed :D wonderful recipe for the potato and cheese bake. and may i suggest another book about reading? The Book Thief by Marcus Zasuk. Its beautiful...

  11. Suma- Thank you so much for the sweet wishes!

    Gayatri- White sauce would be delicious, and you could also use a nice crust of breadcrumbs dotted with butter.

    Miri- How fun that you have a bedtime story ritual with your little girl too. I guess being read to is fun at any age, even after the child can read for herself.

    Mahek- I hope the recipe works well for you.

    indosungod- The green bean bake is definitely worth a try, I think your kids will like it too.
    I'm definitely enjoying our reading times, and excited to explore the kid section of the library.

  12. Anjali- True! It is filling enough to be a meal all by itself :)

    Dizzy Lizzie- Hello and welcome to my blog! I hope you enjoy reading it.

    Priti- If you want to serve this dish as an app, I would suggest going with the patties format (coating with semolina and shallow frying) rather than this bake- makes it nicer and easier to serve.
    For apps, I usually go with simple stuff like spicy roasted nuts and different kinds of dips (hummus, salsa). If you can buy puff pastry, then vegetable puffs are easy to make. Tandoori tofu or paneer is another possibility.

    Niranjana- I think it will be the same for me :) the cuddles and book reading are so much fun even at this age. I'm so excited to explore the world of kid lit.

    Swati Sapna- Thanks for reminding me of that book- I will look for it!

  13. Oh I remember the patties, I made them! The bake looks great ( and time saving) I guess i will exclude the egg and make it!
    Lots of love to little Lila and of course Dale!

  14. Nice, I love the bake!

    This book looks great! Amogh is 3 weeks now I have already started to hunt books. This book looks great. I think i will get one from lib!

  15. The green bean n potato bake sounds so warm and comforting to make on the fall evenings, thanks! It will be on the menu this week.

    So glad to see your post, I'm sure you must be enjoying every moment with your newborn. I was smiling as I read that you introduced baby Lila to the wonderful world of books! One of the best gifts to give to a child!

  16. New to your blog, Nupur!

    Congratulations on having your sweet little baby girl, hoping you and your family are having a great time with her.

    This casserole recipe looks so good! I cannot wait to try it!

  17. I'm in awe that you're able to be writing so beautifully with such a little one about. Inspirational. And I can't wait to try that casserole. Thank you!

  18. The sweet stuff looks amazing. I missed Lila's birth announcement a few months back! Congratulations! She looks so sweet. Love the name you guys picked. Miss you all walking the neighborhood. Happy Thanksgiving!

  19. Your green bean casserole looked amazing.Tried it out but it wasn't as good as I expected. I made it for new year party and it wasn't a hit. It was just green bean sabzi within potato layers and the egg on top didn't go well with the dish either. I really like your recipes and that's why I directly made this for a party instead of trying it our first. I have tried few other recipes of yours and have liked them, this one not so much.
    - gouri


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