Let It Grow Organic Gardens

And I resumed the struggle. -Vladimir

Friday, February 01, 2013

Green Bean Casserole as a Symbol of Sustainable Agriculture

I Offer This, Though it is but a Filigree

   Recipe as art form is a subject that has been exhausted, and need not be revisited here. I do however want to deconstruct the green bean casserole currently cooling on the countertop, and draw a few parallels between it and more significant objects.
   My premise assumes that the casserole, including the green bean casserole, is an icon of traditional American foodstuffs, and by extension of traditional American culture. It’s first contradiction, though, is that it is not static, but evolves to reflect the era in which it is baked. It is currently a homemade meal made from pre-made industrial food products: canned or frozen green beans, canned cream of mushroom soup, cheese commodities, etc.
   (I, for one, vote that it is fine just the way it is.)
   My current tale begins when I acquired a package of dried oriental mushrooms, and began looking for creative uses. The green bean casserole came to mind, probably because I had recently made a traditional version of one to share with the guys at work. This one, however, would have the dried mushrooms, made into my own cream of mushroom soup. The green beans came out of the freezer, grown, blanched and froze last year, or, perhaps the year before. The onion and the processed cheese product came from Ingles.
   I mixed everything up in a stainless steel bowl, and thought: how like the farm!
   In a world of mechanized and industrial green beans, it has hand planted and hand picked green beans. That were put in a zip lock bag in the freezer.
   Add a dash of something from a health food store, and another dash of something from China.
   Rely heavily on other objects from the industrial system, but downplay them in the recipe.
   Revel in the traditionalness of your creation, while reminding everyone of how progressive it is.
   And before you actually eat it, talk about it a whole lot.
   It’s something that can be replicated on organic farms all across the country. Like a Big Mac.


  • At February 02, 2013 11:56 PM, Blogger Dana said…

    What I want to talk about a lot (besides the periodic mention of how dang funny Frank is) is that it IS rather progressive for a man to make a casserole of any sort to take to share with other men at work. This is a good moment for my jingle, which I will sing to you in person next time I see you: "Modern men- workin' it out!"

  • At February 04, 2013 7:13 PM, Blogger Frank said…

    Last night we had waffles.

  • At February 17, 2013 4:25 PM, Blogger Frank said…

    Last night: Zuppa Toscana


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