Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring: Polenta Terrine w/ Roasted Vegetables



Pinch me. It's finally spring!
For Meatless Mondays and the first day of spring, I made this beautiful vegetarian meal.

I saw it on Lisa's site a while back and remembered that I wanted to make this once spring started to show up.

Think spring. Think produce.
Primavera!

Polenta is my new friend. I buy this wonderful stuff from my Italian market and it cooks up in just a few minutes. It's stick to your ribs and goes so well with meats or chicken, or just some caramelized onions on top. It's the mashed potatoes I never loved.

Some people cook it with chicken stock for a richer flavor, and others cook it with milk. In this recipe, I cooked it with water and butter. I added some Parmigiano Reggiano cheese at the end for a bit of umph.

This is a great way to use up roasted or grilled vegetables.
It makes a nice presentation for company too.



Polenta Terrine w/ Roasted Vegetables Primavera:

1 cup of good Italian polenta (cornmeal)
3 1/2 cups cold water
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

Roasted Vegetables: any combination will do (all diced uniformly)

diced red peppers
diced zucchini
diced carrots
diced eggplant
diced red onion
cut up asparagus
diced yellow peppers
cut up mushrooms
olive oil and kosher salt
any fresh herb, parsley, basil or oregano, chopped

1/2 cup of fresh or shredded mozzarella cheese (if using fresh, then use 4 slices).

To roast veggies, lay all of your cut up vegetables on a baking sheet and drizzle w/ olive oil and kosher salt.

Roast in a 400F oven for about 30 minutes until caramelizing. Remove and sprinkle with the chopped fresh herbs. The roasted vegetables can be made a day ahead.
Set aside.



Line a 9" loaf pan w/ wax or parchment paper.

Boil the water with butter and salt and gradually add the polenta. Keep stirring for about 5 minutes. It will bubble and spit at you, so keep stirring. It should be a nice mashed potato consistency.

With a rubber spatula, spread half of the polenta on the bottom of the paper lined loaf pan.
Top with the roasted vegetables (about a cup) and top with the mozzarella cheese.



Spread the rest of the polenta mush on top and even it out with the spatula.

Cover with foil and place in the fridge overnight to solidify.

When ready to serve, remove the solid block from the loaf pan, using the paper edges to lift it out.



Invert it on a cutting board and slice into 1-2" slices. Place the slices on a greased or parchment paper lined baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.





Place in the oven for a few minutes to warm and melt the cheese (about 6 minutes on 400F).

Serve plated with your favorite tomato sauce over and enjoy!



Happy Spring!

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Pinch ME! It's snowing!

Stacey Snacks said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Stacey Snacks said...

I wrote this post last night after a beautiful sunny pre-spring day looking at all my daffodils popping up in the garden, but I just woke up and it's SNOWING here!!!!

The Japanese Redneck said...

Leave it the the weather....brag on it and see what it does.

Looks good, reminds me of our grits which is something we love.

Dana said...

I had totally forgotten about that recipe and damn! does it look good. I have a dinner party coming up in a couple weeks and have been obsessing about what to make and this just might be it!

lisa is cooking said...

Beautiful terrine! Love the asparagus.

Ok, just when I was whining about our mid-80 degree heat and ridiculous humidity, I hear about your snow. Spring is supposed to be somewhere in between!

Kate said...

Spring comes in many forms...I am liking the fresh vegetables!

We Are Not Martha said...

Oh, it's the perfect spring dish!! Too bad it's currently snowing here in Boston, too :( But at least it can be spring in my kitchen!!

Sues

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Delicious dish for these still chilly days. I make something similar for an appetizer, with pesto and chopped up sun-dried tomatoes in middle.

Melissa @IWasBornToCook said...

Looks great. I love polenta. And I can't believe the weather today - CRAZY!

Claudia said...

I'm just going to empty the vegetable bin and go for this. It's part spring and part winter (the comforting part) here and weather dictates menu.

The Jr. Chef said...

Oh my, that polenta looks delicious. Please visit my blog www.pickyeatersolutions.blogspot.com and let me know what you think. Thanks.

Joanne said...

Polenta is my favorite go-to side dish for when I want a starch but have no idea what else to make. I love that you've made a veggie-ful main course out of it!

Proud Italian Cook said...

I love how you can mold polenta into different forms, great presentation, and a great way to use up our veggies!

Elra's cooking and baking said...

Very pretty and delicious looking terrine Stacey!

Anonymous said...

Curious as to what brand of Italian polenta you used that cooked up in 5-10 minutes. The polenta we bring back from Italy takes over an hour-usually use Paula Wolfert's foolproof oven version.

But your's is quicker, and prettier! Thanks

Stacey Snacks said...

Anonymous:
The brand I use is called La Gallinella.
It is from "a farm" in Pavia, in Lombardy. I've been using it for years and love it. It takes 5 minutes tops and is rich and delicious.

Stacey

Bluebird NY said...

This looks lovely...and easy!