Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Mediterranean Polenta Cup

I really like polenta.

It is so versatile. You can bake it, mash it, fry it, and of course, muffinize it.

My boyfriend however, he wasn't so sure of it.

It took some convincing at the grocery store the other day to add it to the shopping cart. I told him "It's good, I swear." But I guess after one bad experience with a type of food it takes a lot of therapy and hypnosis to change your mind. I, of course, pleaded with him saying "It's for the blog!" Of course, he couldn't say no.

I always win when I say that.

"Honey, I need to go shopping for rare, expensive, black PĂ©rigord truffles. It's for the blog!"*

However, after the last few nights of polenta dishes, I think hes coming around. I also let him know that polenta is a good source of iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and vitamin B6. He was totally on board with that. 

Now, this is a dish I haven't tried yet (mainly because the last few nights our polenta has NOT been in the muffin pan, tragic.) But it is one I plan on trying really soon... before the feta I got goes bad. hehe I just didn't want to keep you all waiting for a recipe much longer. When I make it I'll switch out the photos.

Mediterranean Polenta Cups
Recipe and photo from Taste of Home.

4 cups water
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup yellow cornmeal ( or GRATE instant polenta)
1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 tsp pepper
4 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 garlic clove, minced

1. In a large heavy saucepan, bring water and salt to a boil. Reduce heat to a gentle boil; slowly whisk in cornmeal. Cook and stir with a wooden spoon for 15-20 minutes or until polenta is thickened and pulls away cleanly from the sides of the pan. Remove from the heat; stir in thyme and pepper.

2. Spoon heaping tablespoonfuls into miniature muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Using the back of a spoon, make an indentation in the center of each. Cover and chill until set. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the tomatoes, feta cheese, basil and garlic.

3. Unmold polenta cups and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Top each with 1 heaping tablespoon of tomato mixture. Broil 4 in. from the heat for 5-7 minutes or until heated through. Yield: 2 dozen.

4. Serve at a party or divide the mixture into large muffin cups and bake for dinner. 

*For the record, I never got those rare, expensive black perigord truffles. I guess my hold over him isn't as strong as I thought. hehe

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