Grilled Polenta stuffed with Blue Cheese and Walnuts
Life has just given me the most beautiful gift! I got to spend a good half hour with a very awake, very conscious dad!
My heart sings 😀
I thought for sure I would never get see him that way again. He’d been under sedation for the last few days and I was certain that he would never wake up again. What a wonderful surprise it was when my mom told me he was awake! It felt just like a miracle!
The only sad part is he couldn’t even talk to me, for his voice is gone, but at least, he was awake and it felt as though he could understand all that I was saying to him and he was very much aware of everything that was going on around him.
It felt so good to see him like that, if only for a short while.
Now, with regards to nourishment, I had been thinking about revisiting my Olive and Sun Dried Tomatoes Grilled Polenta recipe for a while, and when I saw Heidi’s GORGEOUS Polenta Lasagna last week, it just gave me the ever so little push that I needed.
While her recipe looks absolutely fantastic, it doesn’t quite meet my “healthy” standards, so I decided that I would give my recipe another try. It’s only a matter of time before I try her kicked up lasagna toppings over my bare polenta though! 😉
After this second attempt, I came to realize that a certain amount of fat must be required to make polenta really tasty and creamy. I guess next time, I will try adding a little bit of milk to my water, maybe use half milk, half water, and add about a tablespoon of olive oil to my cooking liquid. And also, maybe up the salt just a tad. Add a little bit of garlic, maybe? I’ll see…
This time, I decided to do things a little differently. For starters, I left the olives and sundried tomatoes out. Not that they weren’t good, it’s just that I felt they were “in the way”. I was in the mood for creamy and didn’t care for the “added texture”…
Then, instead of slicing the polenta into slices and sandwich the cheese and nuts between the slices, I “stuffed” them in the polenta while it was still warm. I spread half the polenta in the pan, sprinkled the cheese and nuts, then topped with the remaining polenta and spread the whole thing smooth.
Since I was planning on grilling my polenta, I figured this method would be a lot more compatible with the grill.
Another thing that I tried was to drizzle about a teaspoon of reduced balsamic vinegar on the polenta. It didn’t look all that good, but it sure added a lot of flavor. If I’m gonna do this again, I need to find a way to make it look better.
In short, this is not a fail, but it’s no “greatest hits” material either.
Looks like there will be a revision #3…
- 4 cups water
- ¾ tsp salt
- 175 grams polenta
- 40 grams blue cheese, crumbled
- 45 grams walnuts, chopped
- Arugula or your choice of greens
- Olive oil, salt, pepper, squeeze lemon juice
- Reduced balsamic vinegar, to taste
- In large saucepan, bring water and salt to a boil. Add corn meal gradually, whisking continually. Once you have added all the cornmeal, lower the heat, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, whisking every 2 minutes or so, until the polenta no longer attaches to the sides.
- Coat 8″ cake pan with cooking spray and pour in half the polenta Spread it as evenly as possible. It helps to spray your spatula with cooking spray, or dip it in water.
- Sprinkle blue cheese and walnuts on top of your polenta and cover with remaining half. Again, spread as evenly as possible.
- Cover with plastic film and put in the refrigerator until completely chilled, preferably overnight.
- Take the polenta out of the pan, cut it into 4 squares and cut each square into 2 triangles.
- Brush with a little bit of olive oil and grill on a pre-heated grill over medium heat or in a non stick pan until nice and golden, about 5-7 minutes per side.
- Serve with arugula lightly tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice.
- If desired, drizzle about a teaspoon of reduced balsamic vinegar overtop the polenta. To make reduced balsamic vinegar, simply bring the vinegar to a boil, reduce heat and let it simmer until it becomes fairly thick. You will need approximately ¼ cup vinegar to make 2 teaspoons of reduced vinegar.
Balsamic vinegar not looking so good…
Blue cheese oozing… and looking good!