Thursday, April 3, 2014

Recipe: Creamy Polenta with Poached Egg, Vegetables and Goat Cheese

It was a typical hump-day Wednesday, and we were all feeling a little blaaah... until dinner happened. This creamy, savory and satisfying dish was a perfect pick-me-up! The polenta is filling and hearty, and layered with crushed red pepper, a poached egg, mushrooms, zucchini and spinach sautéed in avocado oil, and topped off with crumbled goat cheese -- its a real winner.

This was actually my first time making polenta from scratch (I usually just use the store-bought kind), and I was surprised at how easy it was! I used this basic recipe, but added some spices, and salt and pepper to taste. I kept some extra for another meal this week (maybe a polenta pizza?) since I'm now obsessed with how easy it is to cook with. I used a small bowl to cut out little circles of polenta, but this would have been just as delicious if I had kept it lumpy and creamy :)

I made up the rest as I went along, but that's whats so great about polenta -- its the perfect base for all sorts of fun variations. Using any veggies, cheese, and spices you have on hand, you can experiment and create anything you may enjoy. I would argue though, that a runny egg is essential to a polenta entree. It makes everything moist and blend together, adding a touch of decadence and protein. Polenta really lends itself to many tastes. It's great with eggs for breakfast, as a creamy side dish to any protein, or layered with toppings as an entree.  It can be grilled, fried, baked... okay, you get my point - make some polenta!

This was a great vegetarian meal, even suitable for dinner guests. Do you cook with polenta? I'd love to hear more variations for recipes!

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