Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Polenta and Vegetables with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

This dish was so incredibly satisfying!  If you are a current follower of my blog you definitely know how much I love meat, and how much my body actually craves/needs meat.  So when I come across a meal that can fill that need without using meat...I am amazed.  Not only was this meal very fresh and tasty but once again SUPER healthy!  I will say that when cooking this dish you are doing many things at once and it is a little hard to keep everything warm, but it's totally worth the effort put forth!  I adapted this recipe only slightly from SELF.

Serves 4

The Ingredients
1 cup uncooked instant grits (it is what I had instead of polenta)
2/3 Parmesan, grated
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
Cooking oil spray
3 cloves garlic, pressed
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
1/4 cup lemon juice, fresh
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 asparagus stalks, ends trimmed
1 green onion, finely chopped
1 medium eggplant, sliced 1/2 inch to 1 inch thick
1 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1 12ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained
1/3 cup vegetable broth
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

The Process
1.  In medium saucepan bring 3 cups water to boil.  In a steady stream add the instant grits while whisking constantly (about 30 seconds).  Then turn heat down to medium-low heat and continue to whisk about 3-5 minutes or until grits thicken.

2.  Take grits off heat and whisk in cayenne, 1/3 cup Parmesan, and salt to taste.  Then in a 9inch glass pie pan, spray cooking spray and pour the grits mixture into the pan and let cool for 15 minutes (at least).

3.  In the mean time turn oven to broil and cut up all the vegetables.

4.  In a small bowl whisk together 3 cloves of garlic (pressed), thyme, lemon juice, olive oil, green onion, and season with salt and pepper.  This is the dressing for the veggies. Next toss asparagus, eggplant, zucchini, and tomatoes with the dressing you just made and make sure all are coated well.

5.  On a cookie sheet (greased with spray oil) spread all the veggies out in a single layer to roast.

6.  Roast veggies in oven 3-5 minutes each side or until starting to brown.

7.  While veggies are roasting sprinkle remaining 1/3 cup Parmesan over the top of the grits in pie pan.  Then prepare to make the red pepper sauce.

8.  In a food processor add vegetable broth, roasted red peppers, garlic, chives, basil, and balsamic and combine until smooth.

9.  When veggies are done roasting, put the pie pan of grits and cheese into the oven (still on broil) and bake for 2-3 minutes (until top starts browning).

10.  To serve cut up grits pie into 8 pieces and give each plate two pieces.  Then stack roasted veggies in an appealing way and pour sauce over the top and enjoy! So damn good!

Nutritional Facts: (per serving)
Calories: 280; Fat 7.2g; Sat. Fat 2.3g; Fiber 6.1g; Protein 9.8g

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