Monday, April 18, 2011

Meatless Mondays: Spicy Black Beans and Polenta

If you've never had polenta, it is just corn meal whisked with water or broth.  It is smooth and creamy and goes so well with the black beans in this dish (that aren't even spicy in my opinion).  It calls for vegetable broth, but I just made my own out of some vegetable paste (essentially like bouillon) mixed with water, so feel free to use bouillon if you have it or some paste to make your own broth.  You could always make with chicken broth/stock as well.

Also, it calls for adding rosemary to the water for the polenta.  I didn't like the little crunchy pieces of rosemary in my nice smooth polenta so next time I won't add it.  If anything, I would add the rosemary to my bean mixture instead.  I don't understand why you'd want to mess up a nice smooth taste.

It was seriously so good - the polenta was perfect with the beans.  Matthew won't touch beans with a 10 foot pole and we ate without Isabelle since she was taking a nap so I can't really say what kids would think.  I bet though that Isabelle would eat it today for lunch if I gave it to her, she LOVES black beans.

Today's Ingredients:
1 T. olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 small jarred pimiento
1/4 cup white wine (optional)
1 t. dried oregano
2 cans (15 oz. each) black beans
2 cans (14.5 oz. each) vegetable broth
1/2 t. dried rosmary (optional)
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 T. butter

Heat the oil over medium heat in a saucepan that has a lid.  Add
the chopped onion to the pan and cook until the onion is tender.

Add the pimiento, wine (if using) - I didn't use, garlic, and oregano,
and cook for 1 minute more.

Drain one can of beans and add them to the saucepan along with the
other can that is undrained.  Stir well, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer.
Let the mixture cook while you cook the polenta.

Combine the vegetable broth and rosemary in a Dutch oven or
soup pot and bring to a boil, covered, over high heat about 4 min.
Uncover and lower the heat to medium, but maintain a moderate boil.
Whisking constantly, slowly add the cornmeal to the boiling broth.

Continue whisking until the mixture reaches a porridgelike
consistency, 2-3 min.

Remove the polenta from the heat and stir in the grated Parmesan
cheese and butter.

Place some polenta in each serving bowl.  Top with the beans
and serve.

Way easy to make!  I made it easily in under 30 min.

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