Baked polenta with tomatoes...

I was doing a kind of "stock take" in my kitchen cupboard and found a bag of polenta. What to do with that now...? Honestly, even as a chef I'm often lost as to what to do with a surplus of any given ingredient, so you're not alone ;) As there was nothing planned for dinner that day, I decided to make something using that beautiful, yellow thing sitting so long at the back of the shelf (thankfully it was still within the date and the smell was ok, didn't go stale etc, no pesky bugs in it either!). 

I was really surprised by the texture - soft, but holding the shape firmly together. Also, the taste of corn was there, but it wasn't overpowering, which I thought would be the case. The dish turned out as a very nice, delicious and light meal, perfect for lunch or a light dinner (this would also work well as a kind of a side dish, something different). Baked polenta and tomatoes smell sooo appetizing. Are you using polenta in your kitchen? How would you cook/bake/fry it? Looking for some inspiration here! :)

How to make it...
- 650 ml vegetable stock
- 175 g polenta (coarse corn meal)
- 2 big tomatoes (like beefsteak), sliced
- 1/2 small red onion, finally diced
- 1/2 cup grated  cheese, like Parmesan or Cheddar
- pepper
- oil for greasing

Bring the stick to the boil and gradually stir in the polenta. Continue stirring the polenta over a moderate heat for about 5 minutes, until the mixture begins to come away from the sides of the pan. Spoon into a lightly oiled, shallow, wide tin and spread evenly. Leave to cool.
Preheat the oven to 200 C. Cut the cooked polenta into squares (about the size of a matchbox). Arrange polenta sliced overlapping with tomato slices in a lightly oiled ovenproof/baking dish. Sprinkle the onion on top, season with pepper and finally sprinkle with the cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve hot.


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Pozdrawiam, Anula.