Green Bean Soufflé Loaf

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Serves

    10

Appears in

Apples for Jam

Apples for Jam

By Tessa Kiros

Published 2010

  • About

I like the idea of wrapping this up and taking it along on an autumn picnic, perhaps with a pile of schnitzels and the pear butter cake. Cooked beans are puréed and folded into a dense béchamel in a loaf tin, baked and served in thick slices... a little like a cross between a soufflé and a loaf. You can use another herb in place of dill, if you’d prefer. This makes two loaves but you could easily halve the quantity and you can use any shape tin you prefer.

Ingredients

  • 1 kg(2 lb4 oz) green beans, trimmed
  • about 50 g( oz/½ cup) dry breadcrumbs
  • 4 eggs
  • 80 g( oz) grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ tablespoon chopped dill

Bechamel Sauce

  • 50 g( oz) butter
  • 70 g( oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 400 ml(14 fl oz) milk, warmed
  • freshly grated nutmeg

Method

Steam the beans over a pan of boiling water for about 20 minutes until tender. Put them in a blender or processor and pulse so that most are smooth, but there are some small bits, too. Pour into a bowl, season well with salt and leave to cool a bit.

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4). Grease two 20 × 10 cm(8 × 4 inch) loaf tins and sprinkle the bases and sides with breadcrumbs. Shake out the excess.

To make the béchamel, melt the butter in a small saucepan. Whisk in the flour and cook for a few minutes, stirring constantly, then begin adding the warm milk. It will be immediately absorbed, so work quickly, whisking with one hand while adding ladlefuls of milk with the other. When the sauce seems to be smooth and not too stiff, add salt, pepper and a grating of nutmeg and continue cooking, even after it comes to the boil, for 5 minutes or so, mixing all the time. It should be a very thick and smooth sauce.

Whisk the eggs, parmesan and dill together, then fold through the puréed beans. Whisk in the béchamel and add some salt, nutmeg or pepper if needed. Ladle into the tins and sprinkle the tops with a teaspoon or so of breadcrumbs. Put side by side in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes, or until they are set and the tops are nicely golden and crusty. Cool for a while before slicing to serve.