Thursday, October 14, 2010

Lemony Crusted Polenta

Many know my love for polenta. I was overjoyed when I found polenta recipes in a recently purchased cook book. But I noticed they were all a bit similar. One of the things I love about polenta is that there are so many different ways to serve it. I love making it from scratch, but recently patch brought home a tube of premade plain polenta, and I must admit, it is much simpler to just slice off a few pieces and has lead to me getting creative in how I heat it. So far I've tried heating it in the microwave, the toaster oven, the oven, and of course on the stove top.

Since I've recently begun tracking my food on spark people, I have been trying to limit artery clogging fats but incorporate those fats which can help heart health. Often the suggested meal plans include olive oil. Since I was cooking up some polenta anyway, I thought I'd use the Meyer Lemon Olive Oil I bought which comes from right here in Arizona. (Olives do grow well in our climate) I know it's been a while since I shared a recipe or posted anything here, but hopefully this one is worth it.

Lemony Crusted Polenta:
Premade Tube of Plain Polenta (makes 5 servings, 2 to 3 slices per serving)
1/4 cup Almond Milk
1/4 cup Progresso Italian Flavored Bread Crumbs
1/8 cup Hard Italian Cheese of your choice grated fine (I used Parmesian and Romano mixed)
2 - 3 tablespoons Meyer Lemon Olive Oil
large frying pan

Slice polenta into 5 sections then slice each section into 2 or 3 rounds depending on your prefered thickness. I like them rather thin, but they can tend to fall apart more that way so use a sharp knife and slice carefully.
Pour almond milk into a bowl and dip polenta rounds into almond milk
Mix Bread Crumbs and finely grated cheese in small bowl then coat each round in bread crumbs

Heat large frying pan on high, then turn down a bit and coat bottom of pan with lemon flavored olive oil. Carefully lay polenta rounds on pan with 1/8 to 1/4 inch between them. They will sizzle and pop if the pan is hot enough, so be careful. After 15-20 seconds flip and if they're not browned enough cook a bit longer then flip again. Cook till nicely browned n each side then remove from heat and serve!

It's delicous! Sometimes I eat these for lunch with a serving of deli sliced turkey sprinkled with a small amount of grated italian cheese for a little lean protein.

There are some great gluten free alternatives to making bread crumbs that I'd be happy to share if anyone's interested, but this morning I was going for quick and easy since no one eating was gluten intolerant. And if you're vegan just leave off the cheese or substitute it for some potent vegan pseudo cheese

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