Polenta is one of my new favorite items to pick up at the grocery store. I usually buy the precooked polenta “logs”, cut them into 1/3 inch rounds and then sear them in a pan with a little olive oil. Once the polenta rounds are seared you can top them with almost anything. One of the reasons I love cooking with polenta is because it’s a blank canvas and works well with so many different flavors. It’s an easy way to be creative in the kitchen. I’ve made many variations, but this recipe is probably my favorite polenta recipe.
Matt has been sick with the flu and hasn’t had much of an appetite the past few days so last night I was cooking for one, myself. I’ve mentioned before that Matt prefers meals that include some type of meat. I, on the other hand, can take it or leave it and try to eat meat free a few times a week. Since he wasn’t really hungry last night and it had been an incredibly busy day, I wanted to make something quick yet satisfying for myself, preferrably meatless. Enter polenta and portabella mushrooms. I suppose most people might consider this to be a side dish but last night it hit the spot as a main course for me. The creamy mushroom topping was the perfect accompaniment to my seared polenta rounds.
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 polenta log cut into approximately 10-12 rounds about 1/3 of an inch thick
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves of minced garlic
10 oz. of sliced baby portabella mushrooms
1/4 cup white wine (I used Pinot Grigio)
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
1. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, lay the polenta rounds in the oil and sear them about a minute on each side. Don’t overcrowd the pan when you are frying the polenta. You may have to sear the rounds in batches depending on the size of your pan (I did 5 rounds at a time). Remove the polenta rounds to a separate serving plate and set to the side.
2. Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a separate skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and sautee for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and sautee for another minute.
3. Add the sliced mushrooms and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sautee for about 3 minutes, until the mushrooms are cooked through.
4. Add the white wine and sour cream. Stir and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
5. Turn off the heat and add the parmesan cheese. Taste for salt and pepper.
6. Using a spoon, scoop a spoonful of the creamy mushroom mixture onto each polenta round. Sprinkle with additional parmesan cheese if desired.