Tonight I made one of my favorite meals: Polenta Casserole. It’s so easy to make, very healthy, vegetarian, and makes four servings so it’s great for family dinner or leftovers. Here is what you need:
- 1 TB of Olive Oil (or Olive Oil spray)
- “polenta log”
- one large eggplant
- one zucchini
- one yellow squash
- one head of kale
- two large fresh tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups Tomato Sauce
- 1/2 cup reduced fat crumbled feta cheese (or 4 oz goat cheese if you’re a Lactard)
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- S&P to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Start by drizzling the olive oil on the bottom of a 9 x 13 glass baking dish, dispersing it evenly. Slice the polenta into 1/2 inch discs and layer them on the bottom of the dish. You should be able to do one layer, but you can cut pieces to fit in the corners.
Slice the rest of the vegetables into 1/2 inch thick discs, and layer them on top of the polenta. I usually do eggplant first to create a hearty bottom layer, then the squash, zucchini and fresh tomatoes.
Evenly spread the tomato sauce over the top layer. You can use store-bought tomato sauce with some light flavoring (tomato-basil, roasted garlic, or marinara work well), or you can just use the plain canned tomato sauce – whichever is in your pantry! Top the tomato sauce with the kale (ripped into medium size pieces) and cheese, and sprinkle seasonings on top.
Place the dish in the top shelf of the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the feta starts to brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Not to self-promote my company’s brand, but this dish pairs perfectly with the JAQK Cellars 2007 Bone Dance Merlot. Bone Dance is 75% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Syrah, and 1% Cabernet Franc (a wine must be 75% of one varietal in order to call it that varietal). It reflects the qualities of a French Bordeaux, but incorporates the dark cherry and earthy flavors of Napa Valley grapes. It pairs well with the polenta casserole because it compliments the acid in the tomato sauce. Bone Dance also has a great value at only $25 a bottle if you buy directly from the winery, or you can also find a store near you that sells it.