I wanted to give polenta another go as I haven’t used it since I tried it as a topping for a casserole (that turned out quite well), and I’m trying to come up with some “fine dining” style dishes to wow our good friend who’ll be arriving on Monday!
I’m still a beginner when it comes to presentation, I usually pile everything on a plate with no real effort in making it look pretty, so forgive my amateurish plate layout… it’s the taste that matters… isn’t it!
Basil & Thyme Polenta served with Garlic & Herb Mushrooms and Crushed Peas
Serves 2 (with left over polenta for another day!)
1 litre vegetable stock
2 teaspoons dry basil
2 teaspoons dry thyme
12 button mushrooms (medium sized)
2 tbsps vegan margarine/butter
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon dry basil
2 cups frozen peas
Splash of balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon vegan margarine
1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius
2. Prepare the polenta (check the instructions on your own packet) with mine, I brought my vegetable stock to the boil, then slowly poured my polenta and dry basil and thyme into the stock stirring constantly over a medium heat. I cooked the polenta for about 4 minutes then poured it into an 11” round tin (oiled) and pressed evenly into the dish and around the sides and leave to set for half an hour.
3. While you’re waiting on the polenta, prepare your mushrooms by removing the stalks (keep them though) pop onto an oiled baking tray and then mix the margarine, garlic and basil together and spoon a little into each mushroom cap, pop in the oven for 20 minutes.
4. For the peas, just put them in a saucepan and cover with water and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes, remove from heat add the balsamic and margarine and using a potato masher or a fork, crush the peas.
5. To finish the polenta, tip the tin upside down and tap the bottom, the polenta should fall out easily, cut the circle into 8 wedges, brush 4 slices with a little oil and heat a frying pan over a medium heat, brush the top of the wedges lightly with some oil and place oiled side down onto the frying pan and fry off 5 -7 minutes each side. ( the remaining 4 wedges can be wrapped in tin foil and keep in the fridge to use the next day for lunch).
6. Serve 2 wedges on a plate, top with the mushrooms and side of crushed peas and enjoy.