A green bean casserole smothered with
delicious Comté cheese. Photo courtesy
In our mother’s day, green bean casserole was a popular family dish. We can’t remember the last decade we saw one, either at home or on a restaurant menu.
So St. Patrick’s Day, coming up on March 17th, seems like the time to try a good recipe and put more green on the table.
This recipe was shared with us by Comté USA, the American bureau for France’s popular Comté cheese. Also called Gruyère de Comté, it has a much milder flavor than the Swiss Gruyère, aged for only three months compared to 8 months with Swiss Gruyère.
How popular is it? Comté has the highest production of all French AOC cheeses: around 40,000 tonnes* annually.
Dating back to the 12th century, Comté is made from unpasteurized cow’s milk in the Franche-Comté region of eastern France. Here’s some fun cheese trivia: Comté is made only during the summer months, in huge wheels. In the fall, milk from the same cows is used to make Vacherin Mont d’Or, a small, creamy cheese that couldn’t be more different.
If you want to focus on Irish ingredients, look for a Gruyere-style Irish cheese like Glebe Brethan.
*In American English, a ton is a unit of measurement equaling 2,000 pounds. In Europe and elsewhere, a tonne equals 2,240 pounds (1000 kg). Don’t assume it’s the same measurement with a different spelling!
RECIPE: GREEN BEAN & MUSHROOM GRATIN WITH COMTÉ & FRIED SHALLOTS
This is a sophisticated version of a classic green bean casserole. No condensed cream of mushroom soup, no canned French-fried onions!