Chef Ryan

Cajun Chef Ryan

Feeling & sharing a world of cooking ~ more than your average Cajun


Roasted Vegetables with Polenta

September 1st, 2010 · 25 Comments

Roasted Vegetables with Polenta

Roasted Vegetables with Polenta

If you read my post on Polenta with Feta, Tomatoes, and Kalamata Olives dated June 4, 2010 you know that we are fairly new to working with polenta. In that recipe we used a refrigerated polenta product found in the produce section of the store, and it was fairly good. However, this time around we tackled the procedure for making polenta from a recipe of ingredients including corn meal, milk, parmesan cheese, fresh basil, fresh garlic, and chili pepper flakes.

And the result, we will never go back to store bought polenta again!

Polenta is similar to grits in being a corn based product that is cooked with a liquid ingredient, along with spices, cheeses, and protein, then thickened up a bit and served either warm or paned, cooled and shaped. It has a similar characteristic in that of a blank canvas, add you own combination of spices, herbs, vegetables, protein, dairy, and you have an endless array of combinations and permutations with this polenta.

The vegetables in this roasted recipe can include any of your favorite, here are some suggestions; asparagus cuts, sweet peppers large diced, zucchini sliced, mushrooms quartered, yellow squash sliced, red onions sliced cauliflower florets, broccoli florets, baby carrots or slices, eggplant large diced, cucumbers. The vegetables used in this recipe are included in the ingredient list below.

The recipe…

6 Cups Vegetables: sweet green peppers large diced, zucchini sliced, mushrooms quartered, yellow squash sliced, red onions sliced, tomatoes large diced
¼ Cup Plus 1 Tbsp Olive oil
¼ Tsp Plus ½ Tsp Sea salt
½ Tbsp Garlic, minced
½ Tsp Crushed red pepper chili flakes
2 Cups Milk, skim
2 Cups Vegetable stock, divided
1 Cup Cornmeal, yellow
1 Tbsp Fresh basil, chopped
1 Cup Parmesan cheese, shredded, divided
2 Cups Mixed baby greens
Procedure Steps
1. Preheat oven to 375°. In a large bowl combine the vegetables with ¼ cup of the olive oil and ¼ teaspoon of the sea salt. Toss well to evenly coat, then add the vegetables to a 9×13 roasting pan. Roast in oven, uncovered for about 15 minutes, the stir once and return to oven, continue to roast for another 15 minutes or until al dente, or crisp but not over cooked.
2. Meanwhile, to prepare the polenta heat the 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Then add the garlic and red chili pepper flakes and saute for about a minute or two, stirring often. Stir in the milk and 1 cup of vegetable stock, and bring to just under a boil. The liquid will steam up just a bit, but will not be boiling. While the garlic / stock / milk mixture is simmering combine the remaining 1 cup of vegetable stock with the corn meal and stir together well to a smooth paste. Slowly add the cornmeal mixture to the hot milk mixture, stirring constantly. Bring this to a boil, and then reduce heat to low. Cook this uncovered for about 10 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened, stir frequently. Fold in the fresh chopped basil, and ½ cup of the shredded parmesan cheese along with the remaining ½ teaspoon of sea salt.
3. To serve, spoon the warm polenta into a serving plate or bowl, then top with the roasted vegetables, then garnish with the remaining parmesan cheese and mixed baby greens.

Optional: Pour the warm polenta into a greased sheet pan and smooth the mixture evenly into the pan. Allow to cool to room temperature and set up, then cut into portions, such as squares, or cut out rounds with a mold, then serve as above.

Dinner is served …another view…

Roasted Vegetables with Polenta

Roasted Vegetables with Polenta…another view

Roasted Vegetables with Polenta

Roasted Vegetables with Polenta…another angle

Bon appetite!

©2010 CCR

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Tags: 9x13 pan · Entrees · Vegetarian · Whole Foods Cuisine

25 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Claudia // Sep 1, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    It”s gorgeous with the roasted vegetables – complements them perfectly and really makes a meal. I love baking them later to serve with anything and I mean anything.

  • 2 Anna Johnston // Sep 1, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    Came across your blog site Chef & enjoyed reading your ‘about me’ page. Its great to connect, I’ve subscribed, so looking forward to reading more over time.
    I agree, once one prepares their own Polenta there’s no going back to store bought 🙂
    Cheers Anna

  • 3 Pattie // Sep 2, 2010 at 6:22 am

    Wonderful!! This was one of my Nonna’s favorite meals for a summer evening- a wonderful presentation
    xoxo Pattie

  • 4 zerrin // Sep 2, 2010 at 6:55 am

    So healthy, so fresh and so appealing! Thank you for sharing.

  • 5 Jason's BBQ Adventures // Sep 2, 2010 at 8:37 am

    Looks wonderful. I have been thinking of trying to make some polenta myself soon. Great post, love the roasted vegetables with it!

  • 6 penny aka jeroxie // Sep 2, 2010 at 8:39 am

    Nice and fresh salad 😉

  • 7 Trish @IamSucceeding // Sep 2, 2010 at 10:11 am

    Love roasted veggies…love polenta…this is a hit in my book!

  • 8 Carol Egbert // Sep 2, 2010 at 10:26 am

    This looks very tasty. I have never used milk when I make polenta. I’llhave to give it a try. I think of polenta as Italian grits.

  • 9 Emily @Cleanliness // Sep 2, 2010 at 12:20 pm

    Oh that IS gorgeous!

  • 10 Cookin' Canuck // Sep 2, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Ah yes, polenta is definitely on the mind right now as the temperatures drop. This is a beautiful salad – what a rich flavor there must be with the roasted veggies.

  • 11 Susi // Sep 2, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    I’m fairly new to Polenta as well but will never go back to store-bought after making it at home a few times! Yours with the roasted vegetables sounds absolutely divine!

  • 12 Torviewtoronto // Sep 2, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    colourful delicious

  • 13 Drick // Sep 2, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    ‘Italian grits’ … that’s funny Carol– nice recipe for polenta & with the roasted veggies with the greens, this has got to be awesome Ryan

  • 14 Winelady Cooks // Sep 2, 2010 at 5:44 pm

    This looks delicious. A great way to add just that little extra for a special dish. Home cooked polenta can’t be beat.

    Thanks for sharing,

  • 15 pegasuslegend // Sep 2, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    wow now this is a portrait of fabulous good food, healthy and I love polenta, what a great creation!

  • 16 Gera @ Sweets Foods Blog // Sep 2, 2010 at 7:46 pm

    I enjoy polenta when is crispy and baked – with roasted vegs is superb!

    All the best,


  • 17 Amanda // Sep 2, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Sounds marvelous Ryan!

  • 18 Ingeborg // Sep 2, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    Very nice recipe, Ryan.

    I love polenta. I like to have it in the winter…nice and hot with lots of parmesano reggiano! Delicous.

  • 19 Pepy @ Indonesia Eats // Sep 3, 2010 at 10:25 am

    healthy and yummy looking dish!

  • 20 5 Star Foodie // Sep 3, 2010 at 8:37 pm

    I love polenta and it sounds terrific with roasted veggies!

  • 21 Natasha Cardinez // Sep 4, 2010 at 7:37 am

    Good looking salad. Yummy!

  • 22 Conor @ HoldtheBeef // Sep 5, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Great range of colours in this dish! The first bite with the eye is very favourable 🙂

    I’ve never tried readymade polenta before (only recently discovered it actually existed! Not sure if you can get it here) so I’m very happy to hear it is inferior to making it yourself.

  • 23 Gitte // Sep 7, 2010 at 6:05 am

    I have never tried polenta but this looks so delicious. Love all the wonderful veggies.

  • 24 Matt Kay // Sep 7, 2010 at 5:33 pm

    This reminds me that I do not make polenta often enough which is crazy because I like it just about any way it can be prepared. Seems that roasted or grilled veggies would be perfect with it. Good stuff and great color!

  • 25 InTolerantChef // Sep 8, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    I made a huge nearly 10kg pot of polenta at work yesterday, my arm nearly fell off from all the stirring, stirring, stirring. whew! It does taste pretty good though, yumm…