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Recipe: Polenta Cakes with Wild Mushrooms and Herbed Goat Cheese

Omit the cheese for a very low-fat treat!

I love polenta for its versatility and ability to compliment different ingredients and flavors.  Polenta is simply ground cornmeal and this dish can be made with a coarse grind, a finer grind, blue cornmeal (native to Navajo Indians), or even white cornmeal (native to Africa).

I prefer stone ground cornmeal, which preserves some of the hull and germ, making it more nutritionally complete and packs in a lot of extra fiber.

Polenta Cakes with Wild Mushrooms and Herbed Goat Cheese

Makes 6 cakes

  • 2 oz. dried wild mushrooms
  • 1 ½ cups of polenta
  • 4 ½ cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • ¼ + ½ cup goat cheese (about 3 oz. total)
  • 1 cup low fat or non-fat, plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 sprigs rosemary leaves, plus 1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Heat 2 cups of vegetable stock and pour into a heat proof bowl.  Add the dried mushrooms and let sit until plump and the grit has settled on the bottom of the bowl.

Turn stove on medium-high, heat broth until gently boiling.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add polenta and cook, whisking constantly. After 3-4 minutes (or when most of the liquid is absorbed), add the goat cheese in pieces and continue to whisk.  Pour polenta into a 9×9 or slightly bigger pan and let cool for 1-2 hours.  When cooled, use a round cookie cutter, oiled rim of a drinking glass to cut rounds from the polenta sheet into individual cakes.  If you prefer, simple use a knife to cut even sized squares of polenta.

Gently remove the mushrooms from the bowl of warm stock, being careful not to disturb the grit at the bottom (do not pour it through a sieve or strainer).  Over medium-high heat, add a tablespoon of olive oil and sauté the mushrooms until lightly browned.  When the mushrooms are finished, lower the heat to medium and lightly brown the polenta cakes on each side.

Using a food processor, pulse the yogurt, ½ cup of goat cheese, rosemary, salt and pepper together until smooth and uniform.  Layer each individual cake with mushrooms and top with a spoonful of the goat cheese mixture.  Sprinkle with chopped rosemary.

185 calories ∣ 43 calories from fat ∣ 10 g fat ∣ 1 g saturated fat ∣ 28 g carbs ∣ 3 g fiber ∣ 8 g protein ∣ Excellent source of Copper ∣ Riboflavin ∣ Phosphorous ∣ Pantothenic Acid

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